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If you shoe dressage horses, Dave Farley has some pointers that might interest you. If you don’t shoe dressage horses and think you probably never will, you might want to pay attention, anyway.
Farley, a prominent farrier from Coshocton, Ohio, who shoes in West Palm Beach, Fla., during the winter, says dressage shoeing now stretches far beyond its usual boundaries.
“A lot of people think that dressage is used just for dressage horses, but it has spread to all other disciplines in some way or another,” he says. “Almost everything that is done in dressage is now done with other breeds and in other disciplines.
“We see it now in Western riding and all the other disciplines. And we see a lot of Andalusians, Arabians, some Quarter Horses, a lot of Thoroughbreds and many different horses in dressage events,” Farley says.
Dressage is a French term meaning “training,” and in the horse world it is a method for teaching horses to be obedient, willing, supple and responsive to their riders, he notes. “The object of dressage is the harmonious development of the horse in both mind and body, and every horse, regardless of its type or use, can benefit from this training,” he says.
“The training is very in-depth, and it’ll work on every horse. When these horses are working right and are in sync with the rider, they’re amazing animals,” he adds. “As farriers, we don’t see this enough and don’t know the end result of…