The 2017 Region 1 Mini-Convention

Thanks to Davern Kroncke and the Sonoma County Driving and Riding Club!

Our 2017 Mini-Convention was held on March 4 at the Sonoma County Driving and Riding Club in Santa Rosa, California. We had about 55 attendees, two guest speakers - Dr Amber Bowen of Cotati Large Animal Hospital and Kirk Adkins, former staff farrier at UC Davis Vet School and the inventor of the Sneaker shoe for equines - and two speakers of our own, Stephanie Swain and Lea Landry. After the presentations, we had a Region 1 members meeting and our 2016 season Awards.

Dr. Amber Bowen
Dr. Amber Bowen

Dr. Bowen's presentation was on Integrative Medicine for the horse. She implements a holistic approach to veterinary care, and she spoke about acupuncture, herbals, nutritional supplements and regenerative medicine. The primary focus was on the use of acupuncture in conjunction with traditional veterinary care, with case studies. Her presentation can be found here.

Mr. Adkins spoke about hoof trimming and the effect of specific shoe types on horses' performance. He covered the different philosphies that govern trimming and compared the utility of different types of shoes for different purposes. His presentation on trimming can be found here and the presentation on shoe types is here.

Pal and Stephanie
Pal and Stephanie

Stephanie's talk was about the loss of her gelding, Pal, due to exposure to nettles at Pt. Reyes. Evidently, the nettles are particularly virulent at this time of year and some horses are very sensitive to them - as was Pal. The Park Service addresses this on their site in the "Safety and Etiquette" section, and a photo of the nettles can be found here. So be careful!

Using Lea's own words: "Well, there are two kinds of horse people in the world: those who have had wrecks and those who are going to have a wreck. . . My talk wasn't about "planning" a wreck, it was about preparation we all need to do to minimize the damage incurred in a wreck: your own, and others." Her presentation, which I (from personal experience) recommend HIGHLY, is here.

After lunch and socializing, we moved on to the Awards ceremony. The awards presentation can be found here and photos of the award winners are here.

All in all, it was a great day and a great venue. Thanks to Davern and all her helpers: Linda Thomason, Betty Young, Jaime Dieterich, Maria Pilgrim (our MC) and the unnamed thousands who helped set up and then clean up!

Winning NATRC Kids!