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 I have been shoeing horses for over 15 years.  After attending Colorado Horseshoeing School, I moved back to Missouri to begin my career.  I shoe a variety of horses, from Quarter horses, Saddlebreds, Tennessee Walkers , and Morgans  to  Arabians, plus many more.  My main focus is in the Arabians.  I also work closely with several vets in the area to help with soundness issues.  I am also active in the farrier programs in this area.  A few years ago I completed the American Farriers Associations highest

 level of Certification.  This ranking is CJF, or Certified Journeyman Farrier.   Recently I just took some seminars learning how to become an AFA Tester.  I plan on becoming a tester so that I may help other farriers earn their Certified status as well.   For the year 2008, I am the current president of the Missouri Association of Professional Farriers.  I have been very active in putting on seminars to further the continued education of these members.   I am striving to bring the best farrier work that I can to Kansas City, so I am very adamant about the continuous education for farriers.   This will bring the best farriers to you and hopefully create some of the best farriers in the country.   I live outside of Garden City, Missouri with my family.  My wife is Chrissy Norris and I have two daughters, Mackenzie and Shelby.  We have a small farm with 11 arabians and 2 ponies.  We enjoy showing our horses, boating, fishing and spending time outdoors.

 

Sincerely,

Mike Norris CJF

 
Ask-a-Farrier with Mike Norris of Garden City, MO will be a monthly column.  You can submit your question to Chris Norris at shoey@fairpoint.net.  Look for the answer in the coming months!
 

Q: Since winter is approaching, this is a question I am often asked.  Is this a good time to take off show shoes and go barefoot or stay with plates?

A:  I feel that it is very good for the horses foot to take off all the pads and let the foot breathe for the winter. I think this is an excellent time to shorten your feet, go back to plates and try to fix any problems that might have come about during the show season. If you are not working your horse very much for the winter, this would be an excellent time to leave your horse barefoot. Do remember that you will need to start shoeing and preparing the foot for show season in Feburary. I have many show barns that currently do this and we have much healthier feet come springtime. There is less thrush, and the feet aren't brittle and don't crack easily. I find that the horses enjoy this and perform better with the break. By doing this you are letting tendons and ligaments relax to a more normal position than when they have the pads and weighted shoes.