Hoof care experts from World Horse Welfare visited Turkey to take part in a weekend of lectures and demonstrations to vet and farriery students, on 5-6 March.

Turkey is home to approximately 20,000 sport, leisure and working horses and the charity was invited to take part in the event at the University of Sanliurfa near the Syrian border by the Turkish Government.

Director of international training Ian Kelly and farriery instructor Tom Burch lectured to a selection of students at the University, including practicing vets and farriers.

They found that many horses are being shod using out-dated techniques and the wrong equipment.

Mr Kelly said: “We found that some horses have shoes that are made from steel rods used to re-enforce concrete.

“They had simply been cut into circles and then drilled into the hoof.

“These circular drill holes then have square nails knocked into them which do not hold the shoe firmly in place and can cause major damage to the hoof wall.

“Many people there are self-taught but we found them to be genuinely interested in improving the standard of horse welfare.”

The pair lectured to more than 100 people, some who had travelled 1,500km to be there and the charity hopes to organise a lengthier trip in the future to help improve the standards in the non-EU country.

The invitation to visit followed the success of Project Romania, launched in 2006, which has helped to educate practitioners and students in the Eastern European country.