A good farrier should be mindful of the horse’s needs and the owner’s expectations, as such, I continuously work to provide any kind of high quality work from successful barefoot to high fidelity performance and advanced therapeutics.
I started focusing on therapeutic applications above and beyond the standard bar shoes and wedge pads in around 2005. I wanted to be able to efficiently apply any device prescribed for the benefit of my client’s horse’s soundness. To do that, I needed to identify the tools, procedures, inventory and skills to build these specialized appliances as well as the protocols that coincide with their use.
The Silver Bullet Project is a sort of a tongue in cheek nod to the farrier industry term commonly given to this class of top level mostly aluminum applications including Sigafoos glue-ons, roller-motion mechanics, wedged palmar support, rail shoes, etc. The inventory and preparation needed to be able to crack out any of these resource consuming and precision dependent shoes requires a whole new level of organizing the expensive inventory and advanced (as in ahead of time) work needed to be efficient and reliable in the field.
The overall strategy for success through soundness is full documentation of the cases. I keep full records (including notes, pictures and video) of changes in mechanics and soundness and any other important information such as relevant training and competition schedules. This is where the real lessons are learned. We can clearly see how the changes made to the hooves resulted in better movement.
Hand made horseshoes are often used for advanced cases because it allows for complete control, and because there are often no suitable manufactured horseshoes available. There is a steep and time consuming learning curve, but a skillfully forged shoe can be made for any need. Compromises are not necessary because components can be adjusted exactly as needed and at any time.