Whether You're Pro Or Con, It's Time To Talk Licensing

You can almost feel the horseshoeing industry shaking on its foundations already. Like it or not, the regulation of farriers is back on the table.

High-ranking members of the American Farrier’s Association put it there with recommendations covering everything from farrier school qualifications to registration of all farriers by state boards.

The AFA’s board of directors, which represents grassroots chapters from across the country, slowed down the proposal.

One step at a time, they seem to be saying, starting with a very hard look at farrier schools.

But the school inspections would be pointless unless the information collected is to be used in some way. Suggested curriculums? Accreditation?

The AFA isn’t saying. It merely invited questions — or suspicions, depending on your point of view — by giving its Education/Registration Task Force an open-ended directive to continue its work. And people began talking as word spread about the proposal.

Good. There’s lots to talk about.

To What End?

This is widely seen as a move toward farrier licensing through the creation of national standards for farrier schools and horseshoers.

That’s a long way from the current industry practices. No wonder many farriers are upset with the idea.

The truth is, legally speaking, most anything goes in the world of horseshoeing these days.

No training of any sort is required to begin carving a horse’s foot. Unless a farrier crosses the line into animal cruelty, the only accountability is to the horse owners who ante up the cash. And too many…

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Frank_lessiter

Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has spent more than 50 years in the agricultural and equine publishing business. The sixth generation member to live on the family’s Centennial farm in Michigan, he is the Editor/Publisher of American Farriers Journal.

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