Improving one’s efficiency while shoeing horses is something that farriers strive for, and after 36 years in the trade, Collinsville, Texas, farrier Danny Anderson has a few tricks up his sleeves.

After trimming a reiner during a demonstration at a Well-Shod clinic in Amarillo, Texas, the owner of Indian Creek Forge brought one of his hoof knives to the widest point of the foot. He lined up the hook of the blade with the medial side of the foot and set it against the sole.

“Sometimes I’ll set my hoof knife there and measure it this way,” Anderson says, noting that the width of the foot ends at the third rivet on his knife handle. “I’ll check it and I’ll know whether to bring it in or not.”

Danny Anderson

Danny Anderson measures the foot with his hoof knife, noting the location of the third rivet.

Danny Anderson

Anderson checks the shoe using the same hoof knife to ensure the third rivet matches the foot.

Retreating to the anvil, he prepares the shoes for the horse. Before returning to the horse, he repeats the process — this time with the shoe. The width ends at the third rivet.

“I can get pretty close,” Anderson says.

Read more shoeing and forging tips from Anderson by reading “Reiner Farriers Focus on More Than the Slide” in the September/October 2019 issue of American Farriers Journal.