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Trimmer Tool Box


by Vic Daniel, Ontario, Canada

Communication strategies are required foundations for any business or organization to succeed. Over many decades, hoof trimmers have been individualized mostly through our own stubbornness or success by our single minded view on the topic. For the past few years, the HTA Boards have been on a quest to build a collaborative vision for members to act upon. Welcome to the vision of the HTA Toolbox.

Its purpose to clarify and act as a reference for knowledge and best practices using the experience of the members in practical day to day application of their business.

The toolbox is designed to allow members to access peer reviewed methods, practices of work, and anatomy and lesions in format that the membership can understand. Communication can flow in a circle from trimmer to trimmer, trimmer to farmer, trimmer to vet, farmer to vet about matters relating to hoof care decisions. It contains three sections of knowledge.
1.    Guidelines regarding trimming methods
2.    Standards regarding anatomy and lesion identification
3.    Policies reflecting best practices

The first centralized concept to discuss foot care was through the work of Dr. Raven Toussaint of the Netherlands with his Functional Method of Trimming published in the early 1980’s. As the housing models for modern dairy facilities dictated more and more hoof or claw care, it became evident that established hoof trimmers from pasture or tie stall dairy farms needed to look at this method for the free stall facility.

This is not to say good trimmers could not perform their work to the advantage for the cattle in the environment they were exposed . However, there was no written trimming methods to give trimmers other options or methods to consider. Thankfully, the association has members who have filled this void. For the past seen years, Dr. Ladd Siebert has been working on the Kansas Adaptation, now available in a book. Randal White and myself, completed the White Line Atlas Method. All three passed review by the Accreditation Committee (now referred to as the Education Committee) and the Boards review. The current HTA Board position as well as past Boards is positive results count by using the right method for the right situation.

However, this is all a template for the association to proceed. As explained at the past conference, the drawers need to be filled with standards and policies. The Board has approved the creation of Action Groups. These groups will have one leader each and approx. 3-4 members. The Anatomy and Lesion Identification will be headed by Elbert Koster ; Doug Johnstone will lead the Stockmanship Group, Philip Spence will head the Restraining equipment and safe animal handling and Chip Hendrickson will head the Safety group.

We are using this newsletter as a call for volunteers to help participate and get this toolbox complete for the 2016 conference. Please contact our Pres. Elect Jamie Sullivan, or our Executive Director if you wish to participate.

Looking forward to seeing your participation!

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