A SHOE IN: A farrier works on a horse at UQ Gatton campus.
A SHOE IN: A farrier works on a horse at UQ Gatton campus. Hung Vu

University nails new training for farriers

THE art of shoeing a horse won't be lost to the Lockyer Valley if UQ Gatton has any say in the matter.

The university is poised to set-up a new workshop in shoeing, starting an apprenticeship program for farriers of the future. The UQ Veterinary Medical Centre received more than $6000 worth in farriery equipment thanks to Australian horse industry product developer Mustad Australia.

Farriery instructor Craig Jones said he was excited about the opportunities the donated equipment would provide for the farrier program.

"It's a fantastic donation and will help with our training for both the veterinary and farrier students," he said.

"It will allow a lot of interaction between the vets and the farriers as it is important that we have a close working relationship."

A gas forge, anvil and farriery hand tools were all donated to the program to keep shoeing alive and well.

"To have a fully equipped workshop at the Equine Hospital in the Veterinary Medical Centre will also mean that visiting clinicians can use the facility and we can run more training programs," Mr Jones said.

Historically shoeing a horse was carried out by blacksmiths with the modern word farrier derived from the Latin word for iron ferrum.

However, modern farriers combine the skills of blacksmithing with some veterinary expertise in horse physiology, specifically in the limbs, vital to the job.

UQ Gatton Vocational Education Centre currently has 15 farriers undertaking a four-year apprenticeship, involving four days a week of on the job training and one day of technical training on the Gatton campus. The UQ's farrier program is the only accredited farrier program in Queensland. For more information visit uq.edu.au.



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