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Saturday, January 25, 2014

Texas A&M Farrier Conference Brought Together Diverse Professionals with Common Concerns for the Horse's Foot

The following article was shared by Blair Fannin of the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service

More than 70 professional farriers, veterinary students, farrier school students and horse owners gathered for the 2014 Texas A&M University Farrier Conference held January 10 in College Station, Texas.

Hosted by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M, the one-day workshop provided the latest information on proper foot care and shoeing techniques, according to organizers.

David Hood, PhD, DVM (photo
courtesy of Richard Booth)
“The 2014 TAMU Farriers Conference was well attended and was a huge success due largely to the number of highly qualified farriers in attendance,” said Dr. Dennis Sigler, AgriLife Extension horse specialist. “I continue to be impressed with the Texas Professional Farriers Association and American Farrier's Association and their members’ dedication to the continuing education of all professional farriers and the skills and knowledge that the majority of these professionals have.”

Connie Larson,
Zinpro representative
Featured presentations included preparing the foot for shoeing, the value of farrier certification, laminitis research update, live hoof and lower limb dissection, live demonstrations of variations in foot flight demonstrated on the high-speed treadmill, effect of nutrition on hoof health, therapeutic shoeing techniques for laminitis and navicular syndrome and the latest techniques in applying synthetic foot protection material.

Tab Pigg, Vettec representative
Farriers, veterinary students, farrier school students and horse owners gathered recently for the Texas A&M University Farrier Conference in College Station. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo)

Sigler said he and a group of nationally renowned experts made the presentations, including: Dr. David Hood, Hoof Diagnostic and Rehabilitation Center; Dr. Lynn Ruoff, Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine; Dr. Connie Larson, ZINPRO Research Nutritionist; Blane Chapman, American Farriers Association-Certified Journeyman Farrier; Pat Burton, American Farriers Association-Certified Journeyman Farrier; and Tab Pigg, Vettec representative and American Farriers Association-Certified Journeyman Farrier.

Blane Chapman, CJF
“In addition to presentations and demonstrations, lively, interactive discussions were held to take advantage of the knowledge and experience of the large number of certified farriers and examiners in attendance,” Sigler said.

Following the conclusion of the conference, on January 11, the Texas Professional Farrier Association sponsored an American Farrier's Association Certification exam for those desiring to take one of the certification exams. Twenty individuals took exams for farrier certification, according to organizers.

The conference was made possible by ZinPro Corporation, MLS Nutritional Supplements and Alvin Farrier Supply, along with the support of AgriLife Extension and the department of animal science.

Texas A&M University has been hosting farrier seminars for many years. The University is home to both a renowned veterinary college and a highly respected equine science department, as well as an active extension education program. A new equine center is under construction at the university, which is in College Station.

Thanks to Blair Fannin and the Agrilife staff for assistance compiling this article.

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