POWELL, Wyo. - Rik Mettes, the Northwest College farrier and blacksmithing instructor, is once again asking area horse owners to bring their horses to the college for hoof care.
"With the economy still in a rough state," Mettes said, "it's easy to overlook horse hoof care, especially in winter months. But most domestic horses need to be trimmed and/or shod every 6-8 weeks because the majority aren't able to keep their feet worn down as a feral horse can in its 'natural' environment."
According to Mettes, as the hooves grow out, the foot or foundation for the leg moves progressively away from a centered position in a forward and sometimes lateral direction. This causes undesirable stresses on the legs which inhibits performance as well as long-term soundness.
He said the NWC Farrier Science Program offers an excellent opportunity for horse owners to provide this important care while helping farrier students perfect their skills.
Mettes oversees all student-farrier work with a strict focus on quality shoeing. A small fee is charged to help cover expenses. Trimming costs $7 and shoeing $20. Free overnight stabling is available. Feed and water are provided as necessary.
To arrange shoeing services, or for more information, stop by the Northwest College Equine Center, or call Mettes, 307-754-6466, and leave a detailed message. He can be reached toll-free at 800-560-4692, ext. 6466.