Education and Magic in the Desert

Our trip out to Las Vegas for this year’s beginning clinics (Shoe Removal/Booting and Anatomy/ Dissection) was quite challenging due to strong winds and sand storms! But, with this being our last opportunity to visit with and learn from the legendary Åsa, we could not miss it!

The weather took a toll on Åsa’s home, as she lost power the day before the grinder clinic. However with the help of a portable generator, she was able to carry on. With power restored, we moved on to Shoe Removal – and thanks to synthetic plastic hooves designed for training, we practiced shoe removal with the benefit of seeing exactly how the nails are in place.   Additionally we practiced with shoe pullers, creased nail pullers and clinch cutters, pulling steel shoes from both the Hoof Buddy feet and from cadaver legs.

This was my third time attending Åsa’s booting clinic. I don’t think there is anyone that has more experience with hoof boots than Åsa. I always learn so much. We saw so many types of boots and learned the pros and cons of these boots from someone who has great “in the trenches” experience!

We also learned about casting hooves. Here we applied fiberglass wraps to the hooves to provide temporary protection. We were able to use the Vettec gun and apply Super Fast to the sole of our casts, which will extend the life of the casting material. Everyone got to apply a cast themselves as well as use the glue gun.

As if all of that was not enough, and here where the magic happened, we all piled in the vehicles and took a 30 min drive out to see WILD HORSES.

Yes, the very beings we model our work after, are just a stones throw from this clinic. What an amazing day! The third day of the clinic weekend was my favorite. We got a great foundation on hoof anatomy and we each got to trim a cadaver hoof.   This was like getting a free mentorship with Åsa! Additionally we dissected a handful of the hooves we had trimmed and got to discuss everything from lamellar connection to navicular disease. We even dissected a hoof that showed strong signs of laminitis and had significant coffin bone remodeling. (Don’t tell Sarah, but I brought that coffin bone home and am trying to clean it up for showing around)

By Jon Smedley

Jon Smedley is a PHCP Practitioner, and he and his wife Sarah Smedley, currently a PHCP Student Practitioner, together make up Trim & Train. Trim & Train is a hoof care practice based in Oxnard, California where they provide barefoot trimming, booting, casting, glue ons, etc. to clients in several local counties. They can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/trimandtrain/ and their website is https://www.trimandtrain.net/ .


We at the PHCP feel so honored to have Asa as a founding member. While living in Las Vegas, she taught hoof trimming mentorships through our trimming program as well as two important graduation requirement clinics – “Booting and Shoe Removal” and “Anatomy and Dissection”, plus the elective “Grinder Trim” clinics. Asa is currently in the incredible process of moving back to her home land of Sweden, bringing her much loved dogs, cats and horse. We all wish Asa the very best of luck in her new home, and look forward to having her continue to represent the PHCP as she shares her hoof care knowledge internationally.

Miranda Fior