Kirk Underschultz has been a hoof-care professional since 1979 — a testament to his love of the work and devotion to his clients. But it wasn’t long ago that his future as a farrier seemed uncertain.
Several years ago, Underschultz started experiencing painful arthritis in his fingers and wrists — the most critical tools of any farrier.
When Cicero, Ind., farrier Cody Bogard started shoeing a little over 10 years ago, his mentors told him not to worry about getting clients. He would have plenty of work in a couple of years if he did two things: show up on time and return phone calls.
The farrier’s toolbox is critical to his or her livelihood. Quality tools should be built to last, but there are some things that farriers can do to extend — or shorten — the life of their tools. Dan Bradley, International Horseshoeing Hall of Fame member and a representative for GE Forge and Tool of Grover Beach, Calif., offered common-sense tips that he has found helpful with farriers gathered for a clinic and grand opening of Ocala’s Farrier Supply in Florida.
Laminitis is one of the most dreaded equine diseases. Many horses affected by it eventually develop severe or chronic lameness.
Dr. James Orsini, former director of the Laminitis Institute at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine’s New Bolton Center, is well-acquainted with the disease.
The choices farriers make when trimming and shoeing to achieve a certain result are going to have an impact on the entire equine limb and, at times, may result in unintended consequences. Understanding the anatomy of the equine limb beyond the hoof can help reduce the chances of a farrier’s action having an adverse reaction elsewhere. It can also improve the quality of communication among equine colleagues.
A: Ask yourself: Why is the foot clubbed? Shorter leg? Wearing problem from pawing? Conformational? Is the so-called clubbed hoof really clubbed or is the other hoof low-angled or under run? Is there a tendon issue?
When Cicero, Ind., farrier Cody Bogard graduated from shoeing school a little over a decade ago, his mentors assured him that he didn’t need to worry about getting clients. He would have more work than he could handle in a couple of years if he did two things: show up on time and return phone calls.
American Farriers Journal would like to thank the many farriers who dedicate their time, effort and skill to the equine industry. This year marks the 21st annual Farriers Week, a time American Farriers Journal sets aside to celebrate your professional contributions — and invite others to do the same.
I provide hoof care to Thoroughbreds, hacks, show jumper, dressage and 3-day eventer horses. About 12% had high-low hooves — here in Australia we call it “grass hoof.” It’s caused by the horse continually only putting one foot forward to feed.
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