About Our Team
Dr Julie Anna Huss (owner, certified animal chiropractor, farrier, natural trimmer)
Dr Julie is the only certified and licensed animal chiropractor in the state of MN that is also a professional natural trimmer/hoof expert. She has spent years studying the intricate details of lameness, hoof anatomy, equine biomechanics, and natural/holistic horse keeping practices. Dr Julie specializes in working with horses that have chronic or difficult lameness issues including; laminitis, navicular syndrome, past injuries/scar tissue, and more. She has studied and practices a wide variety of chiropractic and soft tissue techniques including: TPT, ART, muscle work (cross friction, trigger point, etc), Graston (scar tissue release), Rock tape/kinesiotaping, stretching and strengthening, Masterson technique, and home exercises for clients to practice. Dr Julie is passionate about holistic and natural horse keeping practices, encouraging freedom of movement, limiting reliance on medications and exploring less invasive therapies.
Dr Julie’s background: She began riding and training horses in 1999, showing in 4-H, WSCA, and APHA–western and english pleasure, showmanship, halter, bareback, and some games. She received hundreds of honors at the county level, 2 state championships, and a national championship. She was the Dan Patch Award winner in 2005.
Dr Julie began trimming her own horses hooves in 2004 and decided to attend traditional farrier school in 2005. She has since attended several seminars on natural trimming and spends the majority of her time keeping horses sound and barefoot. She knew she wanted to pursue a career in medicine from an early age, but developed a passion for holistic medicine after seeing dramatic results from chiropractic in her own life and that of her show horse. She graduated chiropractic school in early 2013 and soon after attended post graduate training to receive additional licensure in animal chiropractic. She continues to attend educational seminars regularly and is a voracious reader–her favorite topics include natural hoof care, anatomy and physiology of the horses musculoskeletal structure and hooves, muscle work techniques, rehabilitation techniques, nutrition, and alternative medicine. She loves working with youth, teaching and training, and often volunteers with the 4-H horse project.
Her husband Caleb is retired from the military after serving several tours in Afghanistan and Iraq and being wounded overseas. He is currently going to school for machining and gunsmithing, but also helps out with the business occasionally. Together we have 4 children, a quarter horse named Boaz, a German shepherd mix named Chloe, and a handful of rabbits. If you’ve known us in the past few years you probably saw Dr Julie either working while pregnant or toting around a little infant!
Catherine Master (equine massage therapist, natural trimmer)
I am Catherine Master, I work at Target headquarters in Minneapolis as a Sr. Engineer in Information Technology. However, my passion lies in taking care of and spending time with animals. I live on a hobby farm with four horses, six cats, two dogs and six chickens.
My passion led me to earn an Associate’s degree in Veterinary Technology. I spent five years as a Vet tech at a small animal hospital and an emergency clinic. A career change led me to earn a Bachelor of Science in Business Management and a Diploma in IT. I have spent 18 years in IT and although it has been a great career, my desire to work with animals never left me.
I became certified Equine and Canine Massage through Armstrong Equine Massage in Becker, MN. I now have my own massage business that I do part time called Three Mares Animal Massage. I enjoy meeting new people and their pets. But the best part is fulfilment I get from helping animals become healthy and feel good again.
Being exposed to massage therapy, highlighted the importance seeing the animal holistically. To learn more about holistic healing, I took some online courses in equine nutrition. Also, I completed a course in barefoot trimming at Liberated Horsemanship’s Natural Hoof Care Training Program. Currently, I am working as an apprentice to Dr. Julie Huss, owner of A Step Above, which offers equine chiropractic and natural hoof care trimming.
The massage, nutrition and natural hoof care skills will allow me to expand my business to include Bare Foot Farrier, nutrition consultant and ultimately transition my career back to animal’s full time.
I am excited about this next chapter of my life and look forward to meeting new clients and their animals and help them on their path to wellness.
Tru Gehrke (office manager)
Tru’s bio to be added soon!
A Step Above’s Mission Statement, Values, and Goals
Mission Statement: The relationship with a horse has the power to strengthen our relationships with each other, with nature, and with God. Our holistic approach strengthens all of these bonds while restoring the lives of horses and the humans who love them.
Values: The best customer service in the industry, quality education for our staff and clients, and placing the health of the animal as top priority.
Our long term goal is to open a full service equine rehab and chiropractic facility in Minnesota where we use holistic healing methods to treat lameness, hoof problems, and other health issues, as well as to prevent recurring or future issues before they arise. We want to integrate barefoot/natural trimming with some aspects of traditional farrier work, as well as chiropractic, traditional medicine, massage and muscle work, herbal and essential oil therapies, acupuncture, nutrition, and more.
This facility will also provide horse boarding in a more holistic sense, for those horse owners who are looking to keep their horses barefoot and as healthy as possible as naturally as possible. Our dream is to be able to treat everything from heaves to club feet to arthritis holistically. This facility will also host a classroom that will bustle with the activity of ongoing educational classes for horse owners and other equine professionals. We will teach on topics ranging from holistic pasture management to hoof trimming to chiropractic/massage techniques horse owners can use on their own horses.