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Footcare By Committee

A gathering of farriers in western Pennsylvania provides opportunity to discuss each other’s approach to hoof care


The Allen brothers Todd (left), Shane (center), and Nate (right) discuss how they would address the hinds on this horse during a rare gathering of the trio and several other farriers.

What’s a typical day for a farrier? Well, define “typical.” How often does one set out to trim and shoe horses without a curve ball coming out of nowhere that disrupts that day’s plans? Is that no longer a normal day?

The purpose of “Shoeing For A Living” is to present a featured farrier’s common practices of the art, science and business of hoof care. Although the types of horses worked with and the issues addressed with their footcare vary, this column has usually followed that template.

But for any farrier practice, how typical is a day in which several farriers drop their schedules and come together for more than 6 hours to provide hoof care for 10 feet? This unique September day was orchestrated by Vandergrift, Pa., farrier Todd Allen.

It isn’t something he does routinely, so in that sense this Tuesday wasn’t typical for his practice. But based on his commitment to education, it was fitting for “Shoeing For A Living.”

11:45 a.m. The day is off to a late start, which actually is strange for Allen. Typically he prefers a much earlier start to the day. But with his brothers Shane and Nate visiting from out of town to attend the Northeast Association of Equine Practitioners (NEAEP) seminar in nearby Pittsburgh, Pa., it was tough getting…

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Jeremy_mcgovern

Jeremy McGovern

Jeremy McGovern has been a journalist for nearly 20 years. He has been a member of the American Farriers Journal staff for 7 years and serves as the Executive Editor/Publisher. A native of Indiana, he also is a member of the board of directors for the American Horse Publications organization of equine media.

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