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How old were you when you realized you didn’t know as much about farriery as you previously thought? This seems to be a trait shared by most practitioners I’ve met. The older they become, the more they recognize the complexity of equine footcare. They see it as an ever-expanding puzzle.
Conversely, some of the most self-assured horseshoers that I’ve come across have less than 10 years invested in the trade. Most young farriers lack this bravado.
Instead, I think they are still trying to develop the farrier’s analytic mind while simply trying to keep their heads above water with finding new clients and managing their business. But there’s still a population of those who exude peaks of confidence.
It’s experience that leads us to realize how much we have yet to learn. There’s the old saying, “The older I get, the less I know.” So it’s not exclusive to farriery — it’s part of life, as long as you are self-aware.
When I visited the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, I spoke to its resident farrier Travis Burns about this topic. He and the Equine Podiatry Services team at the Blacksburg, Va., campus are the subjects of this issue’s “Shoeing For A Living” article.
Do you remember what it was like to just enter the farrier trade? When you pick up a foot and have to determine the best course of action for trimming and shoeing that horse. There are so many variables that go…