Frederick prepares to bring in a horse for shoeing. Beyond the corral, grapevines extend over several acres. This particular stable is actually on the grounds of a working winery.

Shoeing In California’s Wine Country

Farrier Matt Frederick works on a front foot of a horse in California’s Napa Valley, the center of the California wine country.

Farriers come into the business in many different ways and from many different fields. But Matt Frederick, who shoes in Napa Valley, Calif., may come as close as any to having a unique beginning.

Frederick came to horseshoeing with a bachelor’s degree in history, from a career in the restaurant business and with an interest in architecture.

Match that.

Frederick and his wife, Susan, were both working in the restaurant business in the Napa Valley in the 1990s. They both had done some riding and with the free time he had during daylight hours in the restaurant business, Matt began nurturing an interest in show jumping. He trained and competed in the discipline and as a sideline, became interested in farriery.


Farrier Matt Frederick works on a front foot of a horse in California’s Napa Valley, the center of the California wine country.

“Susan was looking at a couple of books about horseshoeing and she said, ‘This is something you should look into,’ ” Frederick recalls.

When he did, he soon found he was seeing related shapes within the hoof, something that had always fascinated him about architecture. He did some more reading. He talked with his own farrier, then went to school, first in Oklahoma, then at the Pacific Coast Horseshoeing School, where he learned under Bob Smith.

He hasn’t put down his hoof knife since — or stopped learning more about hoof care.

Matt and Susan are also credited with helping expand the field of hoof care knowledge…

To view the content, please subscribe or login.
 Premium content is for our Digital-only and Premium subscribers. A Print-only subscription doesn't qualify. Please purchase/upgrade a subscription with the Digital product to get access to all American Farriers Journal content and archives online.

Pat tearney

Pat Tearney

Pat Tearney is a long-term newspaper and magazine veteran writer and editor. Before retiring, he served for a number of years on the American Farriers Journal staff and continues to share his writing talents with our readers.

Top Articles

Current Issue

View More

Current Issue

View More

Must Read Free Eguides

Download these helpful knowledge building tools

View More
Top Directory Listings