Joint Practitioner Educational Clinics: Win-Win for Clients and Their Horses

Case discussion builds camaraderie and helps reinforce professional boundaries

Pictured Above: A veterinarian-farrier workshop at Equine Clinic at Oakencroft with Dr. Mark Baus (lower left) as a presenter.

Farrier Takeaways

  • Educational events that bring veterinarians and farriers together for case study discussion broadens the options for managing lameness.
  • Fostering an environment where participants trust their opinion will be heard and not chastised is fundamental for success.
  • Farrier educational events open the lines of communication between veterinarians and farriers, which leads to quicker and more collaborative efforts to provide a solution to clients.

One Friday a month, 30 farriers in western Pennsylvania gather at Allegheny Equine Practice. At least one, often two, lame horses are awaiting them. A veterinarian performs a lameness exam and explains the steps involved. The horses are blocked and radiographs are taken. The veterinarian provides their findings, but does not indicate what they would do. One by one, each farrier shares their opinion for how they would trim and shoe the horse.

The “Farrier Fridays” establish working relationships between farriers and veterinarians. The educational event gives both professionals an opportunity to tackle tough cases and discuss treatment.

“It gives the farriers a chance to hear the different ways a lameness issue could be handled and it broadens the veterinarians’ minds on different ways of approaching things,” says Todd Allen. The Pennsylvania-based farrier worked closely with Dr. Jim Zeliff of Allegheny Equine to establish the educational events. After each farrier speaks, the veterinarian offers their opinion. The group votes on the preferred trimming and shoeing method and…

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Katie navarra

Katie Navarra

Katie Navarra is a freelance writer who draws from her experiences owning and showing horses, and inter­viewing the industry’s leading pro­fessionals.

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