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Farrier and Blacksmithing Classes

Classes are Friday evenings.

Participating in
Anatomy and Trimming Segment:
$50 each
$150 for four class segment

Participating in
Blacksmithing, Farrier Forging, Shoeing Segments:

$50 each + $30 supplies
$250 for four class segment (as Participant with Supplies)

Auditing Courses:
(attending, learning, watching but no hands-on)
$50 each
$150 for four classes (as Auditor)

Scroll to the bottom to view the calendar and register. Please make sure you register for EVERY class you plan to attend.
If you are confused and would like to bulk enroll in a segment, please email Jen at vandusen@paintedbarstables.com for help

  • For the Anatomy and Trimming course there is no additional cost to register as a participant as no additional materials or supplies are required for the course.
  • For the Blacksmithing, Farrier Forging or Shoeing segments, you MUST pay the additional cost to be a participant. The additional cost is $100 for the entire segment or $30 for an individual class.
  • When registering as an auditor, you may use your package to register for an entire segment (4 class series) OR various classes from all four farrier course segments. When you are auditing the Blacksmithing, Forging or Shoeing classes you will not be able to participate in the hands on activities.

1. Farrier Anatomy and Trimming Hooves

The perfect class for owners and riders of all levels (including those ready to start trimming feet!) to better understand their horses feet and how farriers can affect the wellbeing of their horses longterm.

Target Audience: Owners and Riders of any Level age 13+
Horsemanship Skills Learned: Properly Picking Feet, Lameness Identification, Pulling Shoes, Rasping Flares
Tool Skills Learned: Hoof Testers, Rasp, Hoof Knife, Nippers
Additional Learning Topics: Anatomy, Hoof Dissection Analysis, Farrier Tool Names and Function, Hoof Trim Concepts, Hoof Hydration, Abscesses and Palmer Angle Lamenesses.

  • 10.28.2022 - Hoof Anatomy and Common Problems in Farriery
  • 11.4.2022 - Hoof Balance and Trim
  • 11.11.2022 - Basic Trim and Sole Pressure Relief
  • 11.18.2022 - Cadaver Hoof Dissection

2. Blacksmithing: Forging Steel

The blacksmithing class is a fun introduction to forging and shaping steel for people of all levels. The entire class will be focused on helping participants design and build their own project throughout the 4 weeks of class.

Target Audience: People with an interest in shaping and building things out of steel through forging age +18. No experience necessary.
Tool Skills Learned: Twists and shaping, Drawing, Punching Holes
Maximum Class Size: 6 Participants + Auditors

  • 1.13.2023 - Building Coat Hooks: Twists and Shaping
  • 1.20.2023 - Project Development: Drawing Steel
  • 1.27.2023 - Project Development: Punching Holes
  • 2.3.2023 - Project Wrap Up

3. Farrier Forging: Building Horse Shoes

Learn to build horse shoes that are not only properly shaped, but functional for real-world use.

Pre-Requisite: experience forging or the Painted Bar Stables "Blacksmithing: Forging Steel" course.

Target Audience: People with a foundation of hoof knowledge and experience with forging ready to learn how to build Horse Shoes Skills age 18+
Tool Skills Learned: Measuring and Cutting, Toe Bend, Heel Checks, Turning Branches, Punching Nail Holes, Running Creaser, Drawing Clips, Hot Fitting and Shaping
Maximum Class Size: 6 Participants + Auditors

  • 2.10.2023 - Measuring and Cutting: Toe Bend, Heel Checks and turning Branches
  • 2.17.2023 - Punching Nail Holes and Running Creasers
  • 2.24.2023 - Drawing Clips
  • 3.3.2023 - Hot Fitting and Shaping to Fit

4. Farrier Shoeing: Whack and Tack

Learn how to fit horse shoes to a horse and develop the skills to nail them to the hoof.

Pre-Requisite: Thorough knowledge of horse hoof anatomy, experience giving a basic trim or the Painted Bar Stables "Farrier Anatomy and Trimming Hooves" course.

Target Audience: Experienced Horse People with a foundation of hoof knowledge ready to learn Emergency Trimming and Shoeing Skills age 18+
Horsemanship Skills Learned: Nailing Shoes on a Horse and Emergency Shoeing, Lameness Identification, Basic Lameness Flexion Tests, Abscess Exploration, Basic Trim, Hoof Pad Application, Hoof Packing
Tool Skills Learned: Hoof Testers, Hoof Knife, Nippers, Rasp, Crease Nail Pullers, Pull Offs, Drill Press for Rivot Application.
Additional Learning Topics: Farrier Tool Names and Function, Shoe Types and Uses, Therapeutic Shoeing, Glue on Shoeing.

∞. Forging your Future: Farrier Apprenticeship

Target Audience: Experienced Horse People looking to become a farrier or shoe their own horses
Work alongside Jen in a 1:1 setting to gain experience and knowledge of shoeing horses. Over time develop the skills to be able to trim, forge, cold shoe and hot shoe under Jen's watchful eye.
The perfect prerequisite for enrolling in the Cornell Farrier School.
Apprenticeships are no charge, but require a specific commitment to longterm investment in skills.

Goals of the Farrier and Blacksmithing Series:

Farrier Class Series are designed for horse people of various levels to learn more about care, management and function of hooves - essential knowledge for all owners and riders.

“No Hoof, No Horse.”
Despite their size and strength, horses are notoriously fragile animals. Four slender legs and small hooves bear the horse’s full weight of hundreds of pounds. As a result, it is incredibly attention that anyone involved with horses pay particular attention to the care of their horses’ feet and hooves.

Whether you own a horse, ride a horse, or even just spend time caring for them, understanding the factors in hoof health (genetics, anatomy, environment, nutrition, care) can greatly change the health and potential of a horse.

The more you understand the function and motion of the hoof, the more you will be able to asses a horse:

  • anatomy and functions of the hoof and lower limb

  • how various shapes, sizes and ratios affect the movement of the horse

  • quality of the hoof

  • nutritional value

  • thin or thick walls

  • low heels

  • thrush & diseases

  • and more!

The series will teach you how to safely get under the horse while holding and managing the hoof and leg, remove shoes, and understand the functions of the tools used to care for horse's feet and basic rasp skills.

Each horse used will be assessed as an individual with demonstrations and explanations for the choices made and why. With over 40 horses in the barn there is a LOT that can be learned over the weeks of this class. All of our horses have different needs from barefoot to all-around shoes, arthritis and conformation concerns to athletic and able, young and old, gaited horses, drafts, quarter horses, thoroughbreds, ponies and even a mule!

A Riding Farrier’s Perspective

We are blessed at the Painted Bar Stables to have as our head instructor Jennifer VanDusen, Certified Farrier, as our in-house farrier.

Jennifer Marosek VanDusen, certified farrier, will be teaching the course. Jennifer has a Master's degree in education and also completed the certified farrier program at Cornell University. She is an expert in her trade and looks forward to sharing our horses hoof needs and biomechanics.

Many farriers only get to see the foot in the cross-ties at the beginning and end of a trimming cycle, never getting to see the balance of the hoof or the horse’s movement mid-cycle.

Over the past years Jen has had the rare opportunity to use our herd as case studies spending time at all points in their trimming cycle under them as a farrier, on them as a rider, and witnessing them from a distance as she teaches lessons both on arena footing and trails.

This unique perspective being able to see the effects of both her work and the progression of time on the hooves have given her a deep knowledge well beyond her farrier education and certifications.