Vets Honored For Hoof-Care Work

Two well-known veterinarians in the horse health field are being inducted into the International Equine Veterinarians Hall Of Fame for their strong emphasis on footcare concerns.

In the category of research or industry veterinarians involved in teaching, research or other aspects of hoof care, the inductee is Hilary Clayton of Michigan State University in East Lansing, Mich., also a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for The Horse: Your Guide To Equine Health Care. In the practicing equine veterinarian category, the inductee is Matthew Mackay-Smith of White Post, Va.

Some 41 equine veterinarians were nominated this year for this program that is sponsored by American Farriers Journal. Since actual voting is done by 75 members of the International Horseshoeing Hall Of Fame and 10 members of the International Equine Veterinarians Hall Of Fame, farriers have a significant impact on these awards. Yet both groups know what it takes in the way of knowledge and standards needed to be honored for outstanding accomplishments in equine health care.

Dr. Hilary Clayton, East Lansing, Mich.
Following graduation from Scotland's Glasgow University Veterinary College, Dr. Clayton worked for several years in a mixed veterinary practice before completing her doctorate degree.

Since 1978, she has held academic appointments at veterinary colleges in the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States. She has spent considerable time and effort researching areas that pertain to the footcare interests of farriers.

A past president of the Association for Equine Sports Medicine and a former board member of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP), she‚s published over a hundred scientific manuscripts and books while speaking at numerous meetings and conferences, including a number of farrier events.

Among her many research studies are extensive works dealing with locomotion in sport horses, gait asymmetries associated with different types of lamenesses, the impact of shoeing on locomotion and development of conditioning programs for sport horses.

In 1997, she became the first recipient of the Mary Anne McPhail Dressage Chair in Equine Sports Medicine at Michigan State University. Because of the importance placed by members of the equine industry on her research, she was able to raise over $2 1/2 million to fund the 18,000 square foot Mary Anne McPhail Equine Performance Center on the East Lansing campus.

Under the guidance of Clayton, this will serve as an international center for research projects related to how sound horses function, what turns horses into superior athletes and how horse sports can evolve to bring out the best in equine athlete performance while assuring their safety and minimizing injury. Other research projects aimed at providing farriers with valuable footcare information are already under way at the center.

Dr. Matthew Mackay-Smith, White Post, Va.
As a cofounder and the veterinary medicine editor of Equus magazine for the past 30 years, Dr. Mackay-Smith has made it his mission to educate owners on learning ways to better care for their horses. Hoof care has long held particular fascination for this practicing veterinarian who recognizes that proper shoeing is critical to soundness.

Having treated horses over many years, he has always been dedicated to helping horse owners with their problems in person, over the telephone or through print.

Realizing that vets and farriers are best served by working together toward common goals, he's played an active role in farrier and vet relations while serving as a long-time member of the AAEP Farrier Liaison Committee. During the annual AAEP convention, you‚ll always find him at any scientific presentation where hooves are discussed.

Brian Smith, a farrier at White Post, Va., sums up the dedication put into hoof care by this outstanding veterinarian: „I can‚t think of a better equine veterinarian candidate for the Hall Of Fame than Dr. Mackay-Smith,‰ writes the farrier. „He will go way out of his way to help a farrier, often at no financial gain.

"I've never known him to say bad things about a blacksmith or to place the blame for a horse on the farrier, as much too often happens with other vets."

Smith says that Mackay-Smith has been responsible for taking him from shoeing dude string horses to shoeing world champions. Yet Smith says this equine veterinarian and horseman is happiest when he‚s riding a good horse for fox hunting, endurance riding or riding around the countryside with his grandkids.

If you know a farrier who deserves to be in the International Horseshoeing Hall Of Fame or a vet who should be a member of International Equine Veterinarians Hall Of Fame, here‚s what you need to do.

Send all of the supporting material you have on the individuals that you feel deserve induction to: American Farriers Journal, Hall Of Fame, P.O. Box 624, Brookfield, WI 53008-0624. Or fax the information to (262) 782-1252 or e-mail to Please include your name, address or phone number in case we need to contact you for more information.

Nominations for the International Horseshoeing Hall Of Fame are due by Aug. 30, 2001. The farrier inductees will be announced in the December, 2001, issue of American Farriers Journal.

The deadline for nominations for the International Equine veterinarians Hall Of Fame are due by Jan. 30, 2002. The equine inductees for this award will be announced in the May/June, 2002, issue of American Farriers Journal.

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