Paul Goodness

Good at the Shoeing Trade

Virginia farrier Paul Goodness has worn a lot of different hats during more than 30 years as a farrier


IF THE SHOE FITS. Paul Goodness, a farrier from Round Hill, Va., is a man of many talents. He’s shod Olympic horses, provided hoof care for animals at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., as well as those at an equine hospital. He’s also helped develop new hoof-care products and is now heading up a six-farrier shoeing business.

Paul Goodness is one of those farriers who’s dedicated to trying to find ways to help horses’ feet and keep them healthier. He is also dedicated to helping novice farriers get started in this business — passing along the things he’s learned over the years, to give them a leg up in their budding careers.

Goodness, who lives in Round Hill, Va., has worked with the hooves and feet of Olympic sport horses, racehorses and exotic animals in zoos. He’s been a farrier for 34 years — more than 24 of those in Virginia, where he now manages a group farriery practice called Forge Ahead.

“Our practice has six farriers and we also have several student apprentices and a small office crew that tries to keep us all organized,” says Goodness. “This area has a lot of horses so we are extremely busy.”

Half of the clients haul their horses to one of the Forge Ahead clinics. The group’s main base is near Bluemont, Va. “We usually have two farriers here every day, and have horses coming and going all the time,” explains Goodness. “We also have another clinic at the Marion…

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Heather Smith Thomas

Heather Smith Thomas is a freelance writer based in Salmon, Idaho. Her new book, Horse Tales, is available on amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com and other online retailers.

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