Cutting-Edge 4-H Education

Veteran Illinois farrier annually leads youngsters with an interest in horses through a hands-on equine limb dissection

Donna Meyer, a veteran Illinois farrier helps spread hoof-care knowledge among young horse owners by coordinating a limb dissection program for 4-H Club members.

Sandy Kucharski described the most recent program in the February/March,  2005, issue of Sentinel, a Midwestern horse industry publication.

According to the article, Meyer has been offering the program for young horse folk for 20 years. In addition to her farrier background, she’s a 4-H volunteer herself and a coach in “Horse Bowl,” an organized team-quiz competition for 4-H members that’s held in many states.

This year’s clinic took place at Fox Valley Saddle Association in Hampshire, Ill., with more than a dozen attendees from three counties taking part. The dead limbs for dissection were donated by Cavel International, a DeKalb, Ill., slaughterhouse.

Meyer led the 4-H members through a dissection aimed at giving them a better understanding of the anatomy of the horse’s leg and hoof. Part of the presentation includes a “puppet game” that Meyer has developed which she uses to  demonstrate how tendons extend and contract to control hoof action.

This hands-on experience will not only help these 4-H members in their Horse Bowl competitions, but should go a long way toward teaching them the importance of good footcare. There’s nothing like getting the idea planted when an owner is young!

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Byrne was also a U.S…

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