Dixie’s Farrier Service was founded by Cody Bogard. Cody worked as a barn manager and trainer at multiple barns when Dion O’Brien, a highly skilled and respected farrier, began teaching him about anatomy and hoof care while taking care of the horses at one of the barns. Cody’s love of anatomy and science led him to take a great interest in the complexity of the equine foot. When Dion suggested going to school to learn the basics of hoof care, it was the start of a journey that will hopefully last a long time.
At the time of that suggestion, Cody had just stepped out of college where God had closed some doors and was wondering where to go next. Having a heart for helping people and especially for giving the hope that can only come from Christ, shoeing seemed to be a perfect fit. The enjoyment of and experience with horses coupled with the opportunity to spend time with various people on a semi-regular basis all combined to push Cody towards going to school.
After exploring the top schools in the country, Cody decided to choose Heartland Horseshoeing School in Lamar, MO. It was at this school the company would receive its unique name. First attending the Advanced Blacksmithing course in 2007, Cody began learning to build and modify shoes. In 2008, Cody attended the Journeyman Farrier Course at Heartland Horseshoeing School. With three teachers for eighteen students, the education was very personalized. “Sleep is optional” and “Sweat never drowned nobody” were mottos to live by at the school. While the school was never easy, it attracted a fantastic group in 2008, as it does every year. The first few days are what is affectionately known as “Death by Fire”. Many hours are spent in the forge learning to make tools and shape shoes, sitting in the classroom learning basic anatomy, and dissecting on the third day. Two things learned were that this work will not be easy and that for the remainder of school, you will not be known by your name. Guys were named Speedy Gonzales, Buzz Lightyear, Tupelo, Goodyear, Frodo, and the like. Each name had a meaning or story attached to it. Cody became Dixie. Dixie’s Farrier Service was named in honor of Heartland Horseshoeing School and Chris, Kelly, and Cody Gregory that teach there. While at the school, Cody was at the top of the class in anatomy and pathology tests and wrote his thesis on laminitis. While Heartland was a great start to learning this trade, it was only a start.
Coming back from school, Cody continued to learn by working with various farriers in Indiana and attending every continuing education event he could. Dixie’s Farrier Service was founded on the ideal of education being key in being able to provide the best quality work possible. In 2013, Cody made the decision to put growing the company on hold while he worked with Agape Therapeutic Riding Resources as the equine trainer and an instructor. In 2017, a decision was made to come back to focusing on growing Dixie’s Farrier Service to better serve clients. While Cody’s dream of having a multi-farrier practice with multiple trucks on the road with the ability to meet a client’s hoof care need within hours instead of days or weeks has not happened yet, it is still the dream to one day expand to be able to better serve clients.