What IS a horse?

Since 1996, EQUINExtion has explored horsekeeping practices with this one question in mind.

The ensuing answers built the foundation of the EQ philosophy and continue to inspire us to share what we've learned. Understanding the basic premise of what makes a horse a horse forced us to ask tough questions about current traditions of horse care and to see that, just because something has been done a certain way for a thousand years, doesn’t mean it's right. Most of today's horses are being kept in ways that directly contradict their evolutionary requirements. And they often pay for this with their lives.
Our mission is to shine a light on this disconnect between the horse's innate needs and their modern lifestyle, and to educate people about how they can make the connection to create a disease-free, syndrome-free life for their horses.
“Make the Connection: True to the Nature of the Horse” ­-- in 1999, Equinextion’s first website went live. Our vision and online content continues to adhere to the philosophy of horse-keeping that sees horses living as close to being in harmony with their basic physiological and psychological needs as possible. Although impressed and humbled by the wild horse lifestyle, we recognize that to sustain today’s equines, captivity and management are necessary. We know that we need to adapt our management depending on where horses live, what they have to eat, what their jobs are, etc.

But one thing always stays the same: the needs of the natural horse are simple. It's when we ask them to adapt to our own human needs that things become complex.

We designed the EQ System to describe an environment that stimulates the essential responses of the inherent traits a horse possesses: Constant outdoor access to the seasons and climate, the sun’s rays, and the pull of the moons cycles. Space designed to maximize movement. Footing designed to aide in natural hoof wear and overall foot health. Feeding that mimics slow, continual grazing, providing an array of nutrients along the way. Another horse (or ten!) to honour social needs, providing safety and herd structure...and honouring the individual horse. 

EQ Mission Statement © 1996

We intend to connect with you, horse people from around the globe, through our mutual love for the horse.

We propose to show you that by affirming the innate nature of the horse you will endow it its many freedoms, simplify your own life, and strengthen your relationship together.

We strive to support you as you learn the basic need of the 'enhanced' natural horse and use your own intuition to find and maintain them in a sound mind, body and spirit.

We aspire to grow along with you as you connect with your horse, share the EQ philosophies with others, and support each on their journey to freedom.

To carry out our vision is to create an international community that has made the connection in being considerate and attentive to the essence of the horse ... naturally.

Lisa Huhn

Drawn to horses early in life, Lisa started riding when she was in Grade 3, sparking a quest to learn all she could about horses and riding and training with connection and partnership. She went on to gain a wide variety of riding and training experience: at the race track, on ranches with working cow horses, and at top jumper, western reining, roping, and cutting facilities across the country. She eventually fell in love with the classical art of Dressage. She bought a four month old cull from a breeding program, raised and trained him to Prix St-George level. He was the instigator for her studying the natural horse and the natural performance foot. He was almost 34 years old when he passed away, a faithful friend and partner to Lisa.

After post graduate schooling in two years pre-vet, a two year animal science course and the two year Equine Science program at Olds College (1988-90), Lisa went on to coach young riders in dressage and hunter/jumper. She organized and managed both a national and provincial show team for 5 years, taking students to National championships in Dressage.

Lisa continued her horse education of anatomy, physiology, and the biomechanics of movement,  especially for her effort to understand and learn reasons and treatments for lameness. Though she read the ‘best’ textbooks, talked with and sometimes assisted the best veterinarians and farriers, she still had many unanswered questions.

Why are there so many lame horses? Why are there so many encyclopedic-like books on lameness? Why is the only ‘fix’ shoeing, stall rest and/or surgery?


Lisa says the most important part of her research was to get out of the books and back to the natural horse. For many years she watched and studied a wide variety of horses in a free range environment, comparing to those kept conventionally in stables and stalls. She studied their feet as well as overall health and behaviour, diet and metal health. Lisa has always been an advocate for horses living a natural lifestyle. The barefoot trim, enhanced natural lifestyle, diet and mental health concepts she developed, uses and teaches are an elemental compliment to any horse.

In 1999 Lisa started teaching others to trim their own horses. Equinextion.com free help forums launched in Jan/02 and ran until 2009. Equinextion has been giving clinics, seminars and private courses in Canada and internationally -- on trimming and maintaining the barefoot performance horse, including rehabilitation of chronically lame horses with navicular, laminitis, founder, thrush, and ‘mystery’ lameness.

Lisa and her family and her horses currently reside at the EQ Awakenings Centre in Priddis, Alberta, Canada.




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