Monday, February 09, 2009

Congratulations to Allie Hayes of HorseScience

by Fran Jurga | 9 February 2009 | Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog

Congratulations to our friend Allie Hayes of HorseScience, who was recently inducted into the Horseshoeing Hall of Fame.

Allie's fame in the hoofcare world began when she retired from active shoeing in the 1980s, after a long career as a farrier here in Massachusetts. She was one of the first women to go through farrier school, and was challenged by instructor Bud Beaston to complete the course at his Oklahoma Farrier College. She met the challenge, and went on to do advanced studies with Dr. Doug Butler at Sul Ross State University in Alpine, Texas. And this was after she had finished both a Bachelor's and Master's degree in liberal arts!

Allie said in her acceptance speech that sitting in Bud's classroom was the first time that a lecture really hit home with her and meant something in her life.

In the mid-1980s, Allie's ability to shoe was limited by a freak accident on the job, and she switched her attention from shoeing to making educational hoof models. Her "HorseScience" business has expanded to a point where she is the world's leading (and almost exclusive) source of freeze-dried educational models, and she also supplies much more than legs. The models are freeze-dried in a monstrous freeze-drier machine on Allie's farm, a stone's throw from her wildlife rehabilitation and re-homing projects (anyone for a blind skunk or a one-winged crow?), her farm animals, and her how-many-are-here-today cats.

She's also well-known to FedEx, as vets and farriers from all over the country ship legs amputated from euthanized cases to her to be eternally preserved for further study. People must wonder...

As one farrier said in an email, "It's too bad Allie had that accident and had to stop shoeing, but it was a great thing for us that she started making her models!"

Allie gives clinics, lectures, and slide shows on the anatomy of the foot and lower leg and occasionally presents a museum-like collection of her most unusual specimen. At the Cincinnati conference last week, she casually pulled out a camel's foot, and mentioned a giraffe foot as well. Her show-and-tell discussions with farriers and veterinarians are legendary.

Needless to say, Allie is the first woman to be inducted to the hall, and it is a sign of respect for her that the living members voted for her to join them.

Allie has a hard time drawing the line between education and business and has not been utilized as much as a formal speaker and consultant, partly because her business keeps her so busy. If you are in the hoofcare industry, it is important to support Allie and HorseScience as she leads us all ahead on the road to understanding horses and their problems. She has enabled many people to "see" inside the horse and probably learn things they would not otherwise be able to comprehend. Allie Hayes is a unique treasure in the hoofcare world, and deserves this latest honor very, very much.

Allie makes foot and leg models like this one, which has magnetic bones that snap in and out.

HorseScience also makes hock and knee models, and specialized ultrasound interpretation models.

© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing. 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,, 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