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National Farriers Week Honors Horseshoers’ Dedication

July 8 through 14 designated as a time to thank overlooked pros who keep horses healthy and functional

Brookfield, Wis. — No hoof, no horse. It’s an old but true saying in the equine community. Yet many owners learn the hard way that a horse with a bad foot suffers and often loses its ability to function. Fortunately, thousands of farriers across the United States dedicate themselves to keeping horses’ feet healthy.

In recognition of the hard and valuable work performed by horseshoers, July 8 through 14 will mark National Farriers Week. It is an appropriate time for horse owners to consider the effort and training required by the men and women who shape and shoe hooves to keep the animals comfortable, functional and at the service of their owners.

Horse owners who want to show their thanks to their farriers can download a certificate of appreciation available at http://www.americanfarriers.com/ff/certif. The certificate is made available by American Farriers Journal, the leading magazine serving the hoof-care industry and sponsor of National Farriers Week.

Other ways to show a farrier appreciation throughout the year include:

• Providing a level, clean and well-lit area work area for footcare.

• Having the horses ready for the farrier’s arrival.

• Having an attendant available to keep nervous or ill-behaved horses calm during footcare.

• Training your horses to be comfortable with having their feet handled.

• Working with the farrier to develop a regular schedule for his or her visits.

• Saying “thanks” for a job well done.

“Doing these things will demonstrate to your farrier that you understand the difficulty of his or her job,” says Frank Lessiter, editor and publisher of American Farriers Journal, “but you’ll also make it possible for the shoer to focus on your horse’s feet. That makes everyone — the farrier, the horse and the owner — a winner.

He adds, “Trimming and shoeing the hooves of 1,000-pound animals has always been hard physical labor, but it also requires an ever-increasing level of technical knowledge. Most horse owners don’t realize how much there is to know about a horse’s feet and shoeing them appropriately.

“Farriers often attend specialized training schools and serve apprenticeships just to begin practicing the trade. Then they attend numerous seminars and clinics to continue their education and keep up with the latest research and shoeing techniques,” he says. “They deserve a recognition for their efforts.”


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