For nearly 50 years, Lyle “Bergy” Bergeleen has been trimming and shoeing horses with a learner’s spirit and a heart to provide natural, healthy hoof care. At the start of his career, he was happy to do what he was taught, get paid and head down the road. But it didn’t take long before the discomfort of the horses greatly troubled him. Bergy began looking for answers. He went to shoeing school at MSU. That was helpful in learning how to use a forge but not in preventing lameness. Heading to the American Farrier’s Association Convention in 1978, Bergy was determined to find the oldest, most experienced horseshoer there and pick his brain.
That gentleman was Vern Olinger (Horseshoeing Hall of Fame, 1993). In response to Bergy’s question, “How do you balance a foot?” Vern replied, “It’s simple kid, the hairline tells you. If you have a bump in the hairline, you’ve done it wrong.”
Ok, that was a start. Aware that every action has a reaction, he began the search for what he needed to do, or not do, so that it would result in “no bumps” in the hairline? After 10 years, he discovered it, the repeatable techniques that would work for every hoof, every breed. Several years later, with the desire to stop the suffering of horses and the frustration of horse lovers, he decided to share his discoveries with the world. In 1993, Bergy wrote and published his 1st book HoofTalk, The Hairline Tells It All and the rest is history.
Today, Bergy is still shoeing, using the “HoofTalk Techniques” to keep and restore equine soundness. His quest to alleviate and eliminate all equine suffering is still ongoing. The love for horses that was ignited in his youth has continued through the years and even though his large family is his joy, he still sneaks riding into his schedule whenever he can.