A farrier is a specialist in equine hoof care, including the trimming and balancing of a horse's hoof and the placing of shoes to the horse's foot. A farrier couples a subset of the blacksmith's skills (fabricating, adapting, and adjusting metal shoes) with a subset of veterinary medicine (knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the lower limb) to address the care of the horse's feet.

At one time, farrier and blacksmith were all but synonymous. A farrier's work in colonial America or pre-Industrial Revolution Europe would have included horseshoeing as well as the fabrication and repair of tools, the forging of architectural pieces, etc. Today, farriers usually specialize in horseshoeing, focusing their time and effort on the care of the horse's foot. For this reason farriers and blacksmiths are considered to be in separate, albeit related trades.

A farrier's routine work is primarily hoof trimming and shoeing. In ordinary cases it is important to trim each hoof so that it retains its proper orientation to the ground. If the animal has a heavy work load, works on abrasive footing, needs additional traction, or has pathological changes in the foot, then shoes may be required.

Additional tasks for the farrier include dealing with injured and/or diseased hooves and application of special shoes for racing, training or "cosmetic" purposes. In cases of horses with certain diseases or injuries, special remedial procedures may be needed for the hooves, and then special shoes may need to be constructed and fitted.

In the UK, it is illegal for anyone other than a registered farrier to call themselves a farrier or to carry out any farriery work under the cite web
title=Farriers (Registration) Act 1975
The primary aim of this act is to "prevent and avoid suffering by and cruelty to horses arising from the shoeing of horses by unskilled persons".

ee also

*Horse hoof
*Barefoot horse
*Equine forelimb anatomy
*Horse anatomy
*Worshipful Company of Farriers

External links

* [http://www.bwfa.net/ The Brotherhood Of Working Farriers Association]
* [http://www.guildfarriers.org/ The Guild of Professional Farriers]
* [http://www.farrier-reg.gov.uk/ The Farriers Registration Council]
* [http://www.americanfarriers.org/ American Farrier's Association]
* [http://www.horseshoeingmuseum.com Museum of Horse Shoeing Tools]
* [http://www.horseshoes.com/learning/henry/onthrsft.htm On The Horse's Foot]
* [http://www.anvilmag.com/wrtspec.htm Anvil Magazine]
* [http://ukhsu.com/ The United Kingdom Horse Shoers Union]
* [http://www.irishfarrieryauthority.com/ The Irish Farriery Authority]

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Farrier — Far ri*er, v. i. To practice as a farrier; to carry on the trade of a farrier. [Obs.] Mortimer. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Farrier — Far ri*er, n. [OE. farrour, ferrer, OF. ferreor, ferrier, LL. Ferrator, ferrarius equorum, from ferrare to shoe a horse, ferrum a horseshoe, fr. L. ferrum iron. Cf. {Ferreous}.] 1. A shoer of horses; a veterinary surgeon. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • farrier — 1560s, from M.Fr. ferrier blacksmith, from L. ferrarius of iron, also blacksmith, from ferrum iron (in M.L., also horseshoe ); see FERRO (Cf. ferro ). An earlier form of it in English was ferrer, ferrour ironsmith (late 12c., as a surname) …   Etymology dictionary

  • farrier — ► NOUN ▪ a smith who shoes horses. DERIVATIVES farriery noun. ORIGIN Old French ferrier, from Latin ferrum iron, horseshoe …   English terms dictionary

  • farrier — [far′ē ər] n. [ME ferrour < OFr ferreor < ML ferrator < VL * ferrare, to shoe horses < L ferrum, iron] Chiefly Brit. a person who shoes horses; blacksmith; also, sometimes, one who treats the diseases of horses …   English World dictionary

  • farrier — [16] Etymologically, a farrier is a ‘worker in iron’. The word comes via Old French ferrier 211 fate from Latin ferrārius, a derivative of ferum. This meant literally ‘iron’ (it is the source of English ferrous [19], and may well have been… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • farrier — UK [ˈfærɪə(r)] / US [ˈferɪər] noun [countable] Word forms farrier : singular farrier plural farriers someone whose job is to make horseshoes for horses and fit them on their hooves …   English dictionary

  • farrier — [16] Etymologically, a farrier is a ‘worker in iron’. The word comes via Old French ferrier from Latin ferrārius, a derivative of ferum. This meant literally ‘iron’ (it is the source of English ferrous [19], and may well have been borrowed from a …   Word origins

  • farrier — [[t]fæ̱riə(r)[/t]] farriers N COUNT A farrier is a person who fits horseshoes onto horses …   English dictionary

  • farrier — noun Etymology: alteration of Middle English ferrour, from Anglo French ferrour blacksmith, from ferrer to shoe (horses), from Vulgar Latin *ferrare, from Latin ferrum iron Date: 15th century a person who shoes horses …   New Collegiate Dictionary