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Having a good veterinarian-farrier relationship should be evident. Working together as professionals will deliver the best possible care for the horse. Who would argue against it?
Yet it seems that it still needs to be stated. It may seem obvious and overdone, but when we seek advice from farriers or vets, the subject comes up often. Of course, it isn’t always a one-way issue. Vets certainly have a different perspective regarding their farrier colleagues. But for their portion of improvement, the key is to address it before they enter the workforce.
Instead of talking about it, some are addressing this issue directly with students. They hope to instill in the student that professional communication, appreciation and respect for the farrier.
For example, the University of Florida vet students work alongside practicing farriers in the school’s Blacksmith Buddies program. Also, the American Association of Equine Practitioners and American Farrier’s Association have brought farriers into the schools for short courses since 1991.
However, Iowa State University’s (ISU) College of Veterinary Medicine and the Iowa State Professional Farriers Association have a unique way of bringing each side together at its spring clinic. There are typical clinic activities, but this event hosts a farrier-vet student team contest that combines theory, discussion and forging. You can read more about this clinic and creative contest here.
Much of the credit goes to Iowa State farrier Doug Russo, who drives the early spring clinic. But it may be his…