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Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Laminitis Conference: 2011 Program and Speakers Announced

Dr. Chris Pollitt used thermography to capture the ebb and flow of temperature change in a foot during the onset of acute laminitis over 48 hours (note numbers in the frames) during a research trial at the Australian Equine Laminitis Research Unit. Dr. Pollitt returns to West Palm Beach to speak at his sixth consecutive conference; he's the only speaker to have been on the roster for all six meetings.

Hoofcare and Lameness is pleased to announce its support for the 6th International Equine Conference on Laminitis and Diseases of the Foot (a.k.a. "The Laminitis Conference" or more casually known as "Palm Beach Laminitis"). The program is now complete and you're invited to visit the web site and peruse the lectures and workshops and speakers.

The event: 6th International Equine Conference on Laminitis and Diseases of the Foot
The dates: October 29-31, 2011
The place: West Palm Beach Marriott, West Palm Beach, Florida
Early discount registration deadline: September 10, 2011
Registration fees include meals and all related events
Trade show and sponsorship opportunities are available 

As in past years, all paid subscribers on the roster of Hoofcare and Lameness Journal will receive invitations to the conference. This is the only outside use of the subscriber list that is allowed beyond the walls of this office, so you know this must be an event that is important not to miss. Watch for an announcement in the mail soon, assuming we have your current address.

Non-US subscribers might not receive the mailing, but be sure to look into coming.
This video was made for the opening session of the 2009 Laminitis Conference. Actress Glenn Close was honored at conference (her horse did not survive laminitis); Mr and Mrs Castle, featured on the video, lost their horse Spot, and are key sponsors and friends of the Conference. Mark and Carol Zebrowski stayed involved after losing Cotton and are now active in planning the laminitis conference. 

As in previous years, the event will have two tracks, "scientific" and "practical", (roughly equivalent to "research" and "clinical"/"in the field") as well as an additional caregiving program that is designed for horse owners, but would benefit anyone interested in the care of lame horses.

If you have attended this event in the past, you know that the program is only part of what should attract people to this event. There will be additional events and activities announced later. 

James Orsini DVM, DACVS
Jim Orsini, DVM, DACVS of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine is once again the director of the conference. Rustin Moore, DVM, PhD, DACVS is the chair of the program, with John Peroni, DVM, MS, DACVS of the University of Georgia chairing the scientific program.

Rustin Moore DVM,PhD,DACVS
I was privileged to chair the practical program again this time, with the able assistance of  Amanda House DVM of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, Scott Morrison of Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital and Pat Reilly of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. I think I've worn them out with brainstorming.

Chris Pollitt, BVSc, PhD
As is the custom, the conference is organized by a "program first" planning process instead of a random selection of topics based on inviting speakers first. Four themes to be covered in the conference are centered on the key words "insulin", "inflammation" and "intervention"; a special theme of the practical program is new advances in our knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the foot, both shod and unshod, domestic and wild, large and small, young and old.

David Hood, DVM, PhD
A special in-depth multi-speaker panel will discuss, with audience interaction, the "new normal" horse foot and the variations in the types of feet that make so few assumptions possible.

Some of the key announcements in the practical program include:

The return of David Hood PhD DVM to the speaker roster. Dr. Hood will concentrate on his studies of chronic laminitis and, in particular, evaluating relative lameness, changes in gait and aspects of movement and weightbearing in the foundered horse that need to be considered (and recognized) separately from normal lameness. How do you judge the improvement of a chronically foundered horse based on its movement, rather than just on a radiograph? And does severe lameness permanently alter a horse's landing and weightbearing pattern?

Simon Collins, PhD
Dr Hood will also give a workshop on working on "the unwanted hoof", or on neglected or abused horses that are turned over to him by charity and rescue organizations. He now has a herd of foundered horses looking to him for recovery so they can be re-homed. I'm looking forward to seeing his cases--and his solutions for these horses. This should be helpful to anyone, but in particular when people are seeking low-cost rehabilitation of chronic founder cases or want to completely surrender their laminitic horses. This scenario is facing veterinarians and farriers around the world, and many of these horses can be rehabilitated and re-homed. Dr. Hood will share how he does it and what treatment and ethics might be involved.

Scott Morrison DVM
Chris Pollitt, BVSc, PhD will be leaving behind an almost-empty Australian Equine Laminitis Research Unit; he will attend along with three of his key researchers (Simon Collins, Brian Hampson,and Melody de Laat) who are all speaking, as well as Andrew Van Eps DVM, PhD, DACVIM, of the University of Queensland vet school, who earned his PhD studying laminitis with Dr. Pollitt.

Dr. Pollitt will be sharing the latest research findings from his lab, and will host a special session of innovative 3-D anatomy of the horse hoof and laminitis, along with the AELRU's Simon Collins. 

Raul Bras DVM, CJF
Scott Morrison DVM and Raul Bras DVM from Rood and Riddle will bring with them the latest treatment regimen in use in their program, which has a very large laminitis case load. In particular, they will speak on hoof evaluation and treatment options (such as matching case parameters to treatments and judging the viability of weightbearing structures before putting them under stress), the use of umbilical stem cells for chronic laminitis, case strategies to avoid and treat support-limb laminitis, and the use of hoof casts with acute sinker syndrome.

Lisa Lancaster PhD, DVM
One of several new faces at the conference will be Lisa Lancaster MSc, PhD, DVM, the popular author of many articles in Hoofcare and Lameness (along with Drs Morrison, Pollitt and Hood) and the author of The Sound Hoof. Dr. Lancaster will review her histological and laboratory analysis of hoof flares and the white line at the toe crena, both conducted at the Equine Foot Laboratory at Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine with Dr Robert Bowker, as well as her experiences in using medical acupuncture for both acute and chronic laminitis, and the difference between the two. Lisa currently assists in teaching medical acupuncture at Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine and is particularly interested in using acupuncture therapy to help horses on both sides of the laminitis coin--and there is a difference, she contends.

Brian Hampson, PhD
The second new face is Brian Hampson PhD. The PhD is a new one; Brian has just completed years of research at the Australian Equine Laminitis Research Unit, but instead of studying lamintis directly, he studied the hooves of wild horses. His findings will surprise you.

Brian studied wild horse hooves from a variety of climates and terrains and conducted very careful research. His lectures will focus on what environment does to hooves, particularly the laminar interface, when no humans are around. He'll also talk about laminitis as it appears in each of these foot types--when, why and how. Again, more surprises.

Aaron Gygax, CJF
Farrier Aaron Gygax lived in the United States for a while, working in Palm Beach and at Rood and Riddle, but he is now back in his native Switzerland. He'll be focusing on working with upper-level sport horses who are under pressure to stay in competition training despite their hoof problems and lameness issues. Aaron spoke at the conference in 2007, and was one of the most-asked-for farrier speakers. Don't worry, his English is great!

Pat Reilly
Farrier Pat Reilly of New Bolton Center has taken on the challenge of speaking on what it's like being the referral farrier for the barefoot horse; what's different for these horses in the field and in the clinic, and how the latest scientific information on barefeet can be incorporated into treatment for hoof issues?

Rob Boswell, DVM
Rob Boswell DVM of Wellington, Florida will speak about his recent successful treatments, and Dr. Orsini will speak on intervention techniques used in hospital settings to prevent laminitis in surgical and medical high-risk situations.

Andrew Van Eps DVM, PhD
Andrew Van Eps DVM PhD DACVIM of the University of Queensland School of Veterinary Medicine will co-present with Scott Morrison on support-limb laminitis cases. He'll also speak on cryotherapy to prevent laminitis and on his new work on microdialysis and the "bioenergetics" of the laminar interface.

Donald Walsh, DVM
Finally, Donald Walsh DVM, president of the Animal Health Foundation, will talk about field situations where vets and farriers can help identify horses with the earliest signs of insulin resistance, before the cresty neck and fat deposits and stretched white line make the condition obvious. Dr Walsh is in touch with the real world of horse owners and the frustrations they face and feels that more intervention is needed to prevent early IR horses from reaching the stage of more severe laminitis episodes.

(Some of the speakers are wearing leis because the conference included a dinner cruise in past years and leis were worn by all.)

The Laminitis Conference is like no other equine conference you'll attend. It's a bit like a retreat, or going to an island, with the organizers, speakers, and attendees all together for three days. Meals and evening social events are seamlessly integrated into the conference, and the faculty is available to the attendees throughout the event.

There's a trade show, and the conference works to develop relationships with many key companies who are involved in the sponsorship of the event. Professional event management keeps the meeting running smoothly. And a high percentage of attendees return each time to not only learn, but to share their experiences. It is a meeting where many in the audience could easily be at the podium.

And it's a meeting that you shouldn't miss.

www.laminitisconference.com
Conference registration is now officially open and must be done online. A discount applies to all who register by September 10. Special discounts are available for "teams" (vet/farrier, etc.) who register at the same time. Hotel reservations are now being taken as well; if you want to stay at the host hotel and avoid renting a car, you must reserve your room as soon as possible.

Full details on hotels, registration, the complete program and faculty list are on the conference web site: http://www.laminitisconference.com.



Go to www.laminitisconference.com for full details.
© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask.
Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page).
To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found.
Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Research: Clayton and Bowker's “Effects of Barefoot Trimming on Hoof Morphology” Focuses on Incremental Heel Recovery

"Lights, cameras, heel angles..." Dr. Hilary Clayton uses the most advanced data collection and analysis systems in the world to track how horses move, grow, stand or even sway. Her electronics matched with Dr Robert Bowker's anatomy studies have placed Michigan State University at the epicenter of global hoof research. Since both Clayton and Bowker espouse the advantages of barefoot hoofcare, it's natural that a study with both names as authors would be published. (McPhail Center photo)
Hilary Clayton, BVMS, PhD, MRCVS has an office in the airy, bright new Mary Anne McPhail Equine Performance Center, a state-of-the art equine sports and lameness facility at the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine. It’s chock full of video equipment, sensors, high-tech saddles that need to be tested or patented, sensors, force plates, remote controls and did I mentioin sensors? There’s a feeling that if something is going to affect a change in the future for horses, its route passes through this building. You also have to wonder what the electric bill is. Everything plugs in and has a stand-by red light glowing in the dark. The sensors are always ready.

Across the parking lot looms the main vet college building and large animal hospital. You go inside and enter a labyrinth of corridors. You descend stairs. Pipes rattle. You walk down more hallways. Turn some corners. And at some point, you stumble into a place that is the antithesis of Dr Clayton’s futuristic electronic world.

You’re facing a mountain of coffin bones. Over here are some old farrier books, and through the microscope, you think you see what the classic professor Robert Bowker PhD DVM wants you to see, that a coffin bone can and does have evidence of osteoporosis.

In this lab, things pile up. They get dusty. The information is layered like the strata of a carefully dug herb garden. Deep historical reference compost and intellectual top soil combine here to make ideas grow. Theories and what-ifs sprout like weeds after a summer shower.

On weekends, Dr. Clayton's interest in dressage makes her showing schedule a living laboratory: she competes her horses unshod. Until last year, her veteran horse MSU MAGIC J competed at the grand prix level. Up-and-coming MSU FANFARE, shown here, currently leads the US Dressage Federation standings in dressage freestyle at second level. Both horses were bred by the university and selected by Dr Clayton for their movement characteristics, not their conformation. She looked for horses with good movement, instead of horses that looked like they could move.

Hilary Clayton calibrates a set of sequential video cameras and hits the “on” switch. Robert Bowker digs a little deeper, reaching for a certain specimen he knows is under the pile. He turns an idea around and realizes he forgot to stop for lunch. And that was hours ago.

Both these laboratories and both these professors study the horse’s foot...at the same university. Both are at the top of the game, and in spite of their proximity, they couldn’t be approaching the hoof from more different perspectives.

And what are the odds that if two professors at the same university were studying the same structure, they’d share a common point of view? Or that they could possibly collaborate on a research project?

College professors are often, by nature, protective of their turf. Someone else on the same campus studying the same thing should be a threat. But Clayton and Bowker have managed to put their well-stocked heads together on research for several years.

This week the latest product of their thinking-alike-but-acting-differently collaboration is a paper on how hoof morphology is influenced by a specific method of barefoot trimming. The paper was published in the Australian Veterinary Journal.

For anyone not familiar with the term, morphology is the study of shape, form and structure in nature. We use the word “morph” colloquially as a verb. When you “morph” into something else, you are changing shape or form.

Foot diagram for trimming protocol. The paper does not contain the word "breakover".

Make no mistake: this paper is not going to tell you how to rehab a horse's hoof. It is, however, going to give more credence to the idea that a specific method of barefoot trimming can successfully achieve a precise goal. Because it did, in the hands of Clayton, Bowker et al.

To be clear, Dr. Clayton is listed as the lead author, with Bowker's name fourth. His inclusion in the study is evident in the discussion section, where information on sensory nerves in the foot is shared. His inclusion also means the study is destined for wide readership among his many followers.

The paper begins with an important sentence that bears repeating. Memorize it: "There is little scientific data describing the effects of any type of barefoot trim, particularly in horses that participate in regular exercise in a riding arena, or how such trimming may affect the overall conformation and health of the foot for an extended period of time."

The problem: horses with mildly underrun heels. The goal: palmar/plantar migration of the heel area of the hoof, increase in heel angle and support length, and an increase in solar angle of the coffin bone. The hypothesis: it's possible.

Michigan State University's McPhail Center is where horses, data and electronics come together.
And not only is it possible, it's possible to do it with a rasp, not a wedge pad or a horseshoe. It's possible to do it so that the inside structures are not disturbed by cranking the hoof capsule into alignment in one shoeing, running the risk of creating separations and flares and adding strain to repositioned ligaments and tendons.

The research project achieved its goals, but it is important to note that this was achieved not by removing shoes, but by applying a specific trimming technique and repeating it, over and over and over.

In the end, the heel angle increased an average of almost nine degrees. The difference between toe and heel angle decreased from 13.8 to 7.2 degrees during the one-year maintenance period.

There are some key elements to this study that must be understood: The horses lived in a pasture, not in stalls. They received regular daily exercise (one to three hours) under saddle on a sand arena in a riding program five days a week. The horses were all Arabians of similar height and weight and age (average 13.6 years).

The horses in the study were barefoot before the research began, so they did not have to go through a transition-to-barefoot period. They were trimmed by one farrier (Cappi Roghan, who deserves some credit) throughout the study; he understood his assignment and acquiesced to stick to the program.

In the end, this study is not a victory for barefoot over shoes. This is a victory for showing that trimming alone can achieve a morphological change.

It just takes a lot of time, that's all.

The timeline of the study would not be considered a victory. It took four months of conscientious trimming to reshape the horses’ hooves, and then 12 additional months for the hoof to grow and stabilize in order to complete the study and prove the trim's effect. The authors felt that 16 months was required, based on the premise that a horse’s hoof grows an average of one centimeter per month, so that each horse, by the end of the study, would have had ample time to grow a completely new hoof.

The interesting aspects of the study are the way that the hoof morphology changed in one aspect then changed back. For instance, the area of the frog initially increased, then decreased.

The authors suggest that the horses’ feet at the beginning of the study illustrated the characteristics of wild horses living on soft sandy substrate, as documented by Brian Hampson PhD at the University of Queensland in his recently completed doctoral thesis, The Effects of Environment on the Feral Horse Foot.

The increase in toe angle during the initial transition period was an average of 2.7 degrees. Because this change was gradual, the authors commented that the trimming technique allowed the foot’s internal structures to gradually adapt, without any pathological consequences such as wall flares.

It should also be noted that the authors concurred that the goals of the trimming—palmar/plantar migration of the heels, increases in heel angle and support length, and increased solar angulation of the coffin bone -- are potentially beneficial to the health of the foot.

The key sentence to this study is found near the end of the paper: “Current knowledge of hoof structure and dynamics is incomplete and these ideas, while speculative, may provide a stimulus for further research.”

Note: The study was supported by the Bernice Barbour Foundation and the American Quarter Horse Association. The research team consisted of, in addition to Drs Clayton and Bowker, veterinary student Sarah Gray and MacPhail Center lab manager LeeAnn Kaiser.

Citation:
Clayton, H., Gray, S., Kaiser, L. and Bowker, R. (2011), Effects of barefoot trimming on hoof morphology. Australian Veterinary Journal, 89: 305–311. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-0813.2011.00806.x


Dr. Clayton on biomechanics of footing for dressage horses, part 1


Dr. Clayton on biomechanics of footing for dressage horses, part 2

To understand the full spectrum of hoof science, it is necessary to consider that it is much more than anatomy and physiology. The hoof is in motion, and how it moves affects its shape, its health and the relative condition of its components. Biomechanics means much more than trying to judge if a horse is landing heel-first or not.

You may need to adjust the volume on your computer. Watch as Dr. Clayton describes the mechanics of how the hoof of a dressage horse interacts with the arena footing. Filmed at the 2007 Adequan/ USDF Annual Convention in Orlando, Florida, this video is available on DVD with several other lectures on hoofcare and lameness from the USDF web site.

The abstract for this article is available online: The Australian Veterinary Journal: Effects of barefoot trimming on hoof morphology. You can also purchase a download of the complete article.

Click on ad image for details; image from Dr. Bowker's research at Michigan State U.

 © Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.  
 
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any direct compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned, other than Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Get well, Jessie Ward!

It's hard to keep a good farrier down, as the staff at a Tennessee hospital are learning.

We interrupt this blog to send out a heartfelt and hearty "Get Well!" wish to our friend Jessie Ward of Martinsville, Virginia. Jessie needs no introduction in the farrier world, but others might like to know that she's a creative dynamo--a veteran farrier, a blacksmithing instructor and an extremely talented artist who works in any medium you can think of.

Jessie Ward on a better day
Jessie and her famous Smart Car were hit on an interstate highway by a truck and she's in a hospital in Tennessee, far from home. Her brother Danny said today that she'd be able to come home soon and he'll go get her. He said she could stretch out in the back of his truck for the ride home and I'm hoping that he has a crew cab, and not that he's going to put Jessie in the back with his forge and tools.

This is my favorite picture of Jessie. She was not your typical bride but then she'd never been your typical anything. And that's a compliment!

If you know Jessie, or even if you don't, I hope you'll give thanks that she's still with us. The world needs people like Jessie right now. She's a national treasure of the farrier world, and if you've never met her and seen her artwork, put Jessie on your to-do list.

"She may not be trimming any horses for a while," Danny said today in his understated way. And I know she'd rather be clogging at the festival in Floyd, Virginia this weekend than sitting in a hospital but I'm looking forward to what sort of artistic embellishment she'll give her leg cast.

Click here to read the newspaper article about Jessie's accident and condition.

Bed bunny artwork thanks to ©glowinthedarkpictures.com. Used with permission.


 © Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.  
Follow Hoofcare + Lameness on Twitter: @HoofcareJournal
Hope you "like" the Hoofcare + Lameness Facebook Page
 
Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any direct compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned, other than Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Unshod Racehorse: Racing Commissioners Table Model Rule on Barefoot Racehorses


When the Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI) met at the Holiday Inn in Saratoga Springs, New York on Tuesday, the state regulators had Lasix on their minds. But after lunch, the meeting turned to the model rules that had been proposed for 2011. 

Model Rule 5 proposed allowing horses to race without shoes. It has a proviso attached to it, however: a horse that runs in a race unshod would not be able to race in shoes for 60 days. This requirement seemed to be based on the way that Lasix is handled rather than on the way that equipment changes like bar shoes or blinkers are handled, although their requirements may vary between states as well.

After some discussion, the decision was made to table the rule proposed at Saratoga.

The state of California has gone through an extensive period of evaluating the decision whether or not to allow horses to race without shoes. The question of allowing the practice came up in November 2007, when the state was installing artificial surfaces on the major racetracks. In February 2008, Dr. Diane Isbell, one of the CHRB’s official veterinarians, spoke on behalf of trainers who were training horses without shoes and wished to race without shoes. She also listed some of the improvements seen in the horses training without shoes.

California initiated a temporary open-rule period, with records of unshod horses compiled for reporting to the California Horse Racing Board. During the trial period, data was collected on 211 horses racing in the state, of which 172 were unshod in all four feet, 27 wore shoes in front and not behind, 4 ran with only hind shoes, and 8 horses were running with shoes after having previously raced unshod.

In terms of success of these horses, 77 of the 211 finished in first, second or third place in their races, while 24 finished last and 10 horses were scratched. The great majority (191) of the horses ran at Golden Gate Fields.

At the time that California was considering this rule change, the CHRB found that 13 states and/or tracks allowed horses to race barefoot, with restrictions and stipulations varying between the states. Twelve states or tracks required that horses be shod.

A model rule is not the same as a rule. A model rule gives each racing jurisdiction a framework, or suggested text for a rule, based on the research and expertise of committees within or attached to a larger group like the RCI. So that each state does not have to go out and research a subject, it is provided a model rule that has gone under scrutiny of the RCI system.

Documents from the California Horse Racing Board were referenced in preparing this article. Thanks to Teresa Genaro
who was present at the RCI meeting in Saratoga, for her assistance with this article. Photo credits: "No Shoes" sign by Joshua Barrett, racing on the beach at Laytown Races in Ireland by Paul Walsh.


In stock and ready to ship! Call or email to place your order.


© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.  


Follow Hoofcare + Lameness on Twitter: @HoofcareJournal
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any direct compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned, other than Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Favorite Photo: Proof That Elephants Are Smarter Than Horses When It's Time for Hoofcare

Why won't a horse do this for its farrier? An elephant offers its foot to a handler for cleaning at Taronga Wesern Plains Zoo in Dubbo, New South Wales, Australia. Giraffes are also being taught to cooperate willingly for preventative footcare inspections and trimming at zoos around the world. The Hoof Blog has a series of zoo photos of hooved mammals being trimmed or treated that we'll be sharing with you. This one was taken by equestrian photographer Caroline Wardrop, who more typically would have a horse photo on the blog!

The inner hoof wall captured in a unique microscopic view from coffin bone to periople at the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine Equine Foot Laboratory by Dr Lisa Lancaster. Enlightening! Order yours via PayPal today!

© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.
 
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Monday, July 11, 2011

Calgary Stampede: Steven Beane Three-peats as World Champion



Steven Beane of North Allerton in Yorkshire, England captured his third consecutive global title at the Calgary Stampede’s 32nd Annual World Championship Blacksmiths’ Competition on Sunday. Beane is the first competitor to win back-to-back-to-back world crowns at Calgary since Welshman Grant Moon snared his fifth straight WCBC title back in 1992.

And Beane’s competition in Sunday’s five-man final made the feat that much more impressive. Stoking coke forges around the Big Top floor were Moon, with six world titles to his credit, fellow Welshman Billy Crothers, with five Stampede titles, and Paul Robinson of Northern Ireland, who won the WCBC crown in 2008 before Beane went on his current run.

“It’s very hard to win Calgary every time. But this year, with this field of competitors, there was nothing between us, you know?” said Beane, 32. “These guys are all friends and colleagues of mine.

The full top five were from the U.K., which is quite an achievement.

“And to beat them, you’ve got to be at your best, and I’m lucky it happened for me this week. I’ve prepared, and I’ve put a lot of time in for Calgary – for the past three months, Calgary has been my goal,” added Beane. “With the jet lag, I average only four hours of sleep a night here. So I’ve got to be fit. I’ve got to be focused.

“And when you hear who’s coming, it makes you more determined. You want to win the world championship when all the best farriers in the world are there.”

Beane takes home the winner’s check for $10,000, as well as a gold-and-silver Stampede championship buckle, a limited edition bronze trophy, and a champion’s jacket. Final standings showed Beane with 152 points. Robinson was second with 115 points, Derek Gardner of Scotland placed third with 111, Crothers was fourth at 102 and Moon finished fifth at 95.

Nathan Powell of Water Valley, Alta., was the top Canadian, finishing 10th overall. The WCBC has not crowned a Canadian champion since Bob Marshall in 1986.


The WCBC, known as the “Olympics of blacksmithing,” attracted 56 farriers from 13 countries around the world this summer: England, Denmark, New Zealand, Scotland, Australia, Ireland, Norway, France, Wales, Belgium, Northern Ireland, the United States, and Canada, with more than $50,000 in cash and prizes up for grabs.

Sunday morning’s semifinal saw the 10 remaining contestants shoe the front feet of a light draft horse in 60 minutes. The finalists were given another 60 minutes to shoe the hind feet of that same horse. Judges Ian Allison of England and Dan Haussman of the United States based their decisions, through a blind judging process, on shoe forging, finish, and nail placement, as well as preparation and balance of the horses’ feet.

Henrick Berger of Denmark, Scotland’s David Varini, Jim Quick of the United States, and Yoann Policard of France also made the top 10.

Moon, Robinson, Varini, and Crothers won the four-man team championship, splitting a prize pot of $8,000. Beane was named Forging Champion, taking away $1,000, while Robinson was tapped as Shoeing Champion, pocketing the same amount. Patrick McIvor of Salmo, B.C., took home Artistic Champion honors, while Jason Bromley of the United States was named Rookie of the Year.

At Saturday night’s Metal Art Auction and Metal Art Showcase, Doug Taylor of Blackfalds, Alta., was named overall traditional forging champion, McIvor took overall non-traditional forging champion honours, and Rodney King of New Zealand and England’s Jonathon Nunn teamed up to win the potluck forging category.

Competitors must do their best work in 10 different point classes, including Sunday’s semifinal and final, to win the WCBC. Beane knew he had a 13-point cushion heading into Sunday’s action, but wasn’t really interested in further updates. “I was happy with the work I did. The way I look at it, if I hadn’t won, I was still happy with what I’d done,” he said. “I think that once you please yourself, then you can please everyone else.”

Scores for Top Ten: Beane 152; Robinson 115; Gardner 111; Crothers 102; Moon 95; Berger 63; Varini 56; Quick 48; Policard 34; Powell 34 (Policard ninth).

Results and article provided by the Calgary Stampede.


Follow Hoofcare + Lameness on Twitter: @HoofcareJournal © Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.  
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any direct compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned, other than Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Calgary Stampede: Farriers at the World Champion Blacksmiths Competition

They call it the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth. There's no event quite like Canada's Calgary Stampede, held each July in Calgary, Alberta. It's the world's biggest rodeo melded into the world's biggest country fair and a world cultural fair, to boot. You can learn a lot, or just have fun. It has to be one of the world's largest volunteer-run events of any kind. The World Championship Blacksmiths Competition for farriers has been held at the Stampede for more than 30 years.

NOTE: On Sunday, July 10, the farrier competition will be livestreamed on The Hoof Blog. Watch the WCBC farrier events live on video. (Sorry about the ads, the stream providers just do that.)


Video clip assembled yesterday, shot during the two-man farrier competition.


Blacksmith

Open-hearth coal fires blaze at Canada's Calgary Stampede in Calgary, Alberta.

Blacksmith

The World Championship Blacksmiths Competition (WCBC) has attracted individual farriers and some national teams from England, Denmark, New Zealand, Scotland, Australia, Ireland, Norway, France, Wales, Belgium, Northern Ireland, South Africa, the United States, and Canada.

Blacksmith

Competing for more than $50,000 in cash and prizes, the winning farrier receives a $10,000 check, a limited-edition bronze trophy, a Stampede hand-tooled buckle, and a champion’s jacket.

Blacksmith

Steven Beane of England entered this year’s competition seeking his third straight Stampede title. Last July, Beane, from Northallerton, North Yorkshire, became the WCBC’s first back-to-back champion since Billy Crothers of Wales notched his second and third Calgary crowns in 1995 and 1996.

Blacksmith

This year, WCBC organizers are also placing special emphasis on the four-man team championship, with the winning squad splitting a $10,000 pot. The competition’s forging and shoeing champs will each earn $1,000, as will the top rookie. The farrier competition begins before the Stampede does, with an educational clinic for the farriers.



Here's a quick video introduction to the agricultural side of the Stampede, including scenes from the farrier competition. Notice the spectator children touching the baby pigs and kissing a horse on the nose. Calgary still allows old-fashioned, unsanitary behavior like that. Long may they!

Wash Time

The Stampede has a terrific heavy horse show in addition to the rodeo.

Bareback Up Close

People from all over the world flock to Calgary each year to see the rodeo, but there's a  lot more to see at the Stampede.

Chuckwagons

If I ever saw an event that would have me strapping on a helmet and a body protector, the chuckwagon races would be it. I always thought it should be called the suicide runaway races. The Stampede beefed up its equine welfare program this year by implanting microchips in the horses to keep track of how often they race. Each horse is only allowed to race four days in a row, one race a day. Sadly, one horse has broken a leg and had to be destroyed. Two people have been killed in the races in the past 25 years.

Tiny Dancer

The assembly of Native American nations at the Stampede makes it a world cultural event like no other.


Show Time

I think the thing I like best about Calgary is that everyone in the city seems to be involved and they act like they are having a good time, even if they only wear a cowboy hat once a year! It's one of the best cultural mashups on the planet, as this string section illustrates.

Will and Kate

The celebrity factor went a little off the charts this year when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge decided to stop by. The farriers were disappointed that they didn't come by the competition.

Stampede Photos by Mike Ringwood and Chris Bolin.


 © Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. Please, no use without permission. You only need to ask. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to blog@hoofcare.com.  
 
Follow Hoofcare + Lameness on Twitter: @HoofcareJournal
 
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any direct compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned, other than Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Calgary Stampede World Championship Blacksmiths: View the Live Video Feed on the Hoof Blog

(videostream disabled because event is over)

There is some sort of a scoring problem and, as of Saturday night, the top ten for the live shoeing had not been announced. The competitors don't even know how they're doing!
England's Steven Beane, World Champion of 2009 and 2010 was off to a good start, winning two of the first three classes and finishing second in the other, before the scoring problem came up. The team results are not known.

Sunday update: The Stampede has not supplied any official information about this event.

  
Follow Hoofcare + Lameness on Twitter: @HoofcareJournal
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any direct compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned, other than Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.