The regulation of trimmers / farriers. - Page 6 - The Horse Forum
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post #51 of 59 Old 07-15-2013, 11:05 PM
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There is no regulation of farriers or trimmers here. There is voluntary certification where farriers can take a written and hands on test with the AFA. I think that trimmer or farrier, there needs to be testing for certificates of what you are capable of doing.

As I have learned, farrier schools offer a 2 week course which covers analysis or assessment of a hoof, trimming, anatomy, and putting a basic shoe on a horse. This is a great course for a trimmer, and is the equivalent of the first 2 weeks of farrier school. It could be a common ground, and a certificate for being a trimmer.

Eventually schools would have to commit themselves to giving a person an education that passes a test.

I think trimmers need to be noted as professionals as well. As long as there is only self study, and no guidelines, and not some sort of certificate that says you can do what you say you can do, trimmers will not be professionals.

I know farriers are working on it. The good ones are tired of the ones that don't know what they're doing . So they continue to press on about being certified.

What a can of worms!
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post #52 of 59 Old 07-15-2013, 11:11 PM
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bsms, I wonder if we have the same trimmer/farrier... you don't use the guy from Crooked X (Cody), do you?
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post #53 of 59 Old 07-15-2013, 11:30 PM
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Just adding again to the conversation. My farrier was just out today, he is just home from a conference in Germany and is talking a lot about diagnostic tools and trying to get some of them imported to North America. Lots of talk about limb functionality and we had a great conversation about "what" versus "why" in farriery and horse training. Very interesting to get a wider view on the "why" of differing forelimbs and why chopping off heel might not be the best solution to "fixing" hi-lo. I would be very interested for him to get his hands on this diagnostic tool to use on horses with different forelimbs and try out this functional trim - beyond what his current techniques are (which obviously are already successful - the proof is in the pudding with my horse).
As well talking about choosing a farrier - he says he gets his clients as well trained as they will let him, and then when they go looking around at the work of different farriers, that is what keeps the clients coming back. That bad farriers are a better advertisement than his own good work. Often if the work is good it goes unnoticed, but bad work is obvious. Which I thought was interesting and totally true. However that sometimes being critical of a horse's faults can make owners balk - even though the owners who accept this and treat it and use their farrier as a tool end up in the end being successful. The parallels between the world of farriery and training horses are astounding.
It's amazing that two trims can take two hours but there is always something to discuss with my farrier!! I don't know how this level of detail for a TRIM can be covered in two weeks. Considering a conference on limb functionality can span 40 hours at a vet clinic....
I would love to see even trimming being treated as a trade, with certifications and everything. I can't imagine using a farrier any less educated than mine.

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post #54 of 59 Old 07-16-2013, 12:29 AM
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I have to again mention Germany also. I was blessed with an outstanding farrier for close to 15 years. He was a master farrier, so was his father and grandfather. His journeyman had no intentions of becoming a master, was happy as a clam with his boss. Those two did between 800 and 1000 horses a month, from race horses to jumpers and dressage horses in and around Bremen, prime Hanoverian country. He was doing a barefoot trim pretty darn close to a now known as wild horse trim long before Jaime Jackson came in the picture.
I never had a sore horse with him, he wanted to keep shoes off whenever possible, but shod when necessary. He explained everything he did, showed hubby how to do touch ups when needed, was always punctual and never ever rough with a horse. When we moved south about 600 miles, he still came, every six weeks, always on time. I couldn't convince him to come to Italy when I moved there, unfortunately.
When leaving Germany, there were two or three hoof care specialist schools in place, with owner courses and professional school. The pro's had to do school( theory) and parallel to that, apprentice with a certified trimmer, get a certain amount of apprentice hours, would get rated by the certified trimmer, before they could do the final test. These schools were approved by the government, and trimmers couldn't shoe a horse with metal and nails. Glue one and booting was allowed.
This would guarantee the horse owner a certain standard of knowledge, just as a certified farrier who went through the apprentice program.
It takes some of the guess work out of finding a good farrier/ trimmer.
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post #55 of 59 Old 07-16-2013, 04:02 AM Thread Starter
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Can I ask another question while I have some hoof interested people here - In the US has it always been common to have horses barefoot or is it the norm to shoe once a horse is backed (as it is in the UK), just wanted a feel for the proportions of people using farriers or trimmers or trimming their own?
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post #56 of 59 Old 07-16-2013, 11:39 AM
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Clava, as far as that goes, I can only speak for my own area. The whole barefoot trend is relatively new around sort of came into popularity along with the whole touchy-feely natural horsemanship movement.

Most of the older style horse people I know generally still treat horses the way they were raised/treated 50 to 100 years ago. They are left almost completely untouched until they are brought in at the age of 2 or 3 to be started. At that time, they get their first shoes and many remain shod throughout their lives, regardless of whether they are being worked every day or twice a year.

As for me, I only have a horse shod if they are in consistent work on terrain that would warrant the need for shoes. For example, we keep cattle in the summertime and much of the ground where they are pastured is rocky and we do a lot of work on rocky roads...sometimes at a full gallop and/or with hard stops/turns thrown in. While shoes won't completely protect from a stone bruise, they help to minimize the possibility.

Other than that, I like to keep mine barefoot because it's easier on my farrier and because they just don't need shoes if all they're doing is standing in a paddock or being lightly ridden on grassy trails.
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post #57 of 59 Old 07-16-2013, 12:16 PM
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Where I grew up it was the norm to go barefoot. The only ones I can remember as a child being shod were some of the neighbour's draft horses, if they were working (and I think it was if they had to venture out on the roads). The ponies were never done and we rode those guys every day all over the place; as well the horses (quarter horse types) weren't done but they were used mostly in the cattle pastures so that may be why they didn't need to be done.

P.S. Now that I reflect upon matters, I suspect finances were a consideration in not shoeing the ponies and horses as well.
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Last edited by Chevaux; 07-16-2013 at 12:18 PM.
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post #58 of 59 Old 07-16-2013, 12:51 PM
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Yes it is the norm to shoe horses once they are in work. I pulled the shoes on my international horse and have not shod the young guy in my charge with great results.
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post #59 of 59 Old 07-16-2013, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by existentialpony View Post
bsms, I wonder if we have the same trimmer/farrier... you don't use the guy from Crooked X (Cody), do you?
Guess we do. He's only been out once so far, but he did a good job as far as I can tell. He was careful, didn't rush and my horses all seem to be fine. Mia would have crawled into his hip pocket if she could have fit. We're planning on using him regularly now.

If I needed corrective shoeing or something unusual, I might look for more experience or certifications - but our needs are pretty straightforward. When Trooper was a ranch horse, I know darn well his trimming/shoeing was done by the boys and not a pro - the ranch he was on didn't have money to pay a pro! And all their horses (the ranch in Utah) seem to do fine, living healthy and working into their 20s.

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