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The American Farrier’s Association (AFA) was organized in 1971 as a group that would help each other in the horseshoeing business, especially in the areas of education and promoting professionalism. They hold an annual convention in various places in the country to provide continuing education. Not all horse owners are familiar with the American Farrier’s Association, although well known among equine professionals. Recently, the AFA had the notoriety of being the “official” farrier at the World Equestrian Games held in Lexington, Kentucky. 

The AFA consists of different chapters such as the Missouri Association of Professional Farriers and the Kansas Farrier’s Association. These local chapters have meetings, clinics and contests at different times of the year to help fellow farriers improve their skills.

One of the most fundamental programs developed by the AFA over the years is their certification program. There are different levels of certification listed in progressive order as: Certified Farrier (CF), Certified Tradesman Farrier (CTF), and Certified Journeyman Farrier (CJF). These letters are often added to the name of a farrier to signify their certification status. The tests are progressively difficult and require a lot of practice and extensive anatomical study of the horse’s legs and feet. Many of us find it necessary to take the test several times to pass. An AFA certification is not necessary to be able to shoe horses. Indeed, there are many highly skilled farriers who do excellent work and have elected not to go through the process. Anyone who has taken the tests to certify will tell you that it has greatly improved their skill and knowledge.

Hopefully, this article has shed some light on this excellent equine organization. The AFA has been successful in its accomplishments. They are continuously growing and striving to become more progressive. Even more important is the end result of improving performance as well as the quality of life for our equine friends.

For more information on the American Farrier’s Association or their certification program, go to www.americanfarriers.org.

William “Toby” Tobler, CJF
About KFA - Kansas Farriers Association
Formed in 1987, the Kansas Farrier’s Association (KFA) is the 39th Chapter of the American Farrier’s Association (AFA). Through the years, KFA has provided continuing education for members by hosting numerous clinics, demonstrations and contests. KFA along with the Missouri Association of Professional Farriers’ (MAPF) also hosted two national conventions in Kansas City for the American Farrier’s Association in 1996 and 2001.

Our website was designed to give equine enthusiasts access to a current list of farrier services available in their area by members of KFA.

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