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It’s all about the feet: Hawaii Horse Expo hosts second equine medicine symposium

August 22, 2017 - 1:00am

WAIMEA — Horse behavior is as complex as human behavior and can be just as difficult to understand. One thing is for certain: A horse can’t be healthy, dependable and happy if it has hoof problems.

National equine experts will share their expertise on this topic at Hawaii Horse Expo’s Second Equine Medicine Symposium Sept. 9-10 at Pukalani Stables in Waimea.

The two-day intensive clinic will examine the nature and correction of the many hoof related issues confronting today’s horse owners. Led by Andy Parks MA, Vet MB, MRCVS, Dip ACVS and Steven E. O’Grady DVM and certified farrier, this limited seating event offers a rare opportunity for lay people to be exposed to the same information as veterinarians.

Parks is department head of large animal medicine at the University of Georgia, and a specialist in the equine foot, lameness in horses and equine diagnostic imaging. The author of more than 35 published articles including treatment of acute laminitis, he has done extensive research on lameness in horses and diseases of the feet.

O’Grady practices in Keswick, Virginia, and Palm Beach, Florida, where he limits his work to feet. Grady is an expert on therapeutic farriery. Together, Grady and Parks present 12 programs for veterinarians worldwide and are frequent contributors to conferences held by the American Association of Equine Practitioners. Hawaii Horse Expo is privileged to host them in Hawaii.

Dale Myler, a third-generation horseman and one of the world’s leading bit designers, will join the symposium for a special presentation tying in damage to the horse’s mouth related to the feet. His research into equine dentistry and physiology has evolved the understanding of not only the mechanics of bits, but also how they can contribute to the communication between horse and rider.

The symposium will be from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Clinics are smaller in scale, allowing attendees personalized attention.

Early registration, featuring a 10 percent discount, will end Aug. 28 and registration closes Sept. 5. Online ticket sales are available for a limited number of attendees at They are also available at Hawaii Island Humane Society shelters and via charge by phone at 329-2135, extension 3.

The event will include a silent auction and mobile animal adoptions. Proceeds will benefit the Hawaii Island Humane Society’s Horse Rescue Fund, which helps abused and abandoned horses on the island.

For questions, call 887-2301. For more information and ongoing program updates visit

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