Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Strasser Basic Holistic Hoofcare Seminar, Riga, Latvia, September 25-27, 2009

We are pleased to report about the very successful Strasser Basic Hoofcare Seminar, which took place at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the Latvian Agriculture University, Riga, Latvia, September 25-27, 2009.

The Seminar gathered more than 30 participants, including 4 veterinary doctors.

Lecturer Dr. vet med. Hiltrud Strasser (Germany), a veterinarian who for nearly 30 years, of which 15 in her own clinic (Hufklinik,, has been studying and researching the causes and cures of lameness and other common health problems of domestic horses. She has based her research on the wild horse and has defined the optimum barefoot model. Using her research she has developed a complete system for the care of horses in a manmade environment which minimizes the many health problems currently found in conventional boarding. The orthopedic methods she has developed have yielded unprecedented success in equine lameness rehabilitation. More importantly her techniques are successful as a daily method for maintaining horses in optimum health. In 1993, she opened the 'Institute for Hoof Health' and ESHOP (European School for Hoof Orthopedics), a center for study and learning. Dr. Strasser is the author of several text books on lameness and healing, reference books on natural boarding for horses, and many articles for both horse and veterinary journals.

During two 6 hours long lectures on the 1st and 2nd days, Dr Strasser covered such topics as anatomy, physics and functioning of the horseʼs hoof, the importance of these functions, linking the hoof to the rest of the animal and the effects of horseshoes; the theoretical basics of anatomically and physiologically correct hoof trimming (different from the trim taught in conventional farrier courses); what to expect during the transition and/or rehabilitation period of the lame or shod horse to the sound, high performance barefoot horse; the environmental needs for horse health and identifying
the harmful conditions in conventional boarding.

Lots of questions awaited Dr Strasser during the breaks and after the lectures each day.

The most exciting day! The day no 3 was spent with hands on practice.

Dr. Strasser made a full trim of one of the cadavier hooves, demonstrating and explaining trimming techniques.

Then the participants had an opportunity to trim the cadavier hooves themselves. Dr Strasser checked everyone's work, explaining problems of and the trimming techniques for every particular cadavier hoof.

Dissection of hoof biospecimens for study demonstrated the situation inside the hoof and the reason for correct trimming.

We would like to thank Dr. Strasser for this successfull seminar and for her unfailingly dedication for the welfare of the horses and we hope we can continue our work together for this aim.