Bad Farriers! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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Bad Farriers!

Hey guys,
I just had the worst experience with a farrier about two months ago! Woman came very highly recommended as a Barefoot Trimmer from folks on the ranch where I board. She was fairly new to some people on the ranch, but I figured I would give her a try. Now I have a horse who was an abused horse, and you CAN NOT hit him. You can tell him stand, or yell at him and he will understand that he does something wrong, but if you hit him he gets VERY scared and will not let you near him! I had also only had him for about 4 months when she came to work on him. He had his feet done twice before when I had him though with a different farrier, and did perfectly with no issues. Well this woman comes along, and I even tell her that he was abused and needed a soft and understanding hand with NO hitting. So he does just fine with all three feet until she gets to his back right hoof. He was trying to put his foot down and she didn't even make a noise at him before hitting him FULL SWING with her filing rasp! She hit him right onthe corner of his hip, not even on the meaty part. After that he freaked out and stepped sideways and then would not let her near him. Well we both decided to have her come down on another day to finish the job. I paid her $40, and dhe left....that was my mistake. She never called back. I tried calling her for over 6 weeks every 2-4 days to try and get her out to the ranch to do his last foot. She finally got a hold of me 6 weeks later via TEXT (very unproffessional) and told me that she did not want to be behind my horse. I had no problem with that, but I wish she would have told em that BEFORE I had to wait to try to even get a hold of her. Then I sent her a text back, and requested a refund since the job was never done, and she actually calls me and yells at me like a child. Saying things like "I have no horse sense" and "my horse is too wild to be handled and tried to kill her". She also claims that he was KICKING at her face, and even had a mud mark on her hat, but I didnt see onee mark on her, plus I was holding him, I wouldve known if he kicked (pluys hes a big strong quarterhorse, i fhe wanted to kick her he WOULD have, and even so he is a "flight" not "fight" horse). She never finished the job, never gave me a refund, and verbally abused me and physically abused my horse. I just had a new farrier look at his feet yesterday to do them, and my horse was perfect as before.

Has anyone else had horror stories with their farrier? I was absolutely appalled by this woman's behavior and even had to report her for her actions! Thoughts?

PS: Before any farriers reply, I did apologize to her the day of for him "acting up", though he definitely was not kicking. It was the end of the day, so I think she had a rough day and ended up taking it out on the horse, and then later on me. I am very concerned for the welfare of my farrier when they are under my horse, and I would never put them under a horse that I believed might cause them harm. Though I am still concerned about the welfare of my horse as well, I do understand in full that the hroses training is my job and not the farriers. Plus I told her the whole scoop about my horse and his background, so that she knew that he could not be hit, and she did so anyway.

Last edited by nrhareiner; 02-16-2010 at 02:19 PM.
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post #2 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 02:28 PM
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If someone needs/wants the name of the farrier in question please do it through PM. Thanks

-I'm so busy... I don't know if I found a rope or lost my horse.
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post #3 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 02:34 PM
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Did you call any of her references? How long had she been "trimming"? You have to spend as much time picking a farrier as you would a used car. Also is she a liscenced farrier and with whom is she liscensed? Too many people buy some tools and print business cards and call themselves farriers and the worst of them call themselves barefoot trimmers because they have less tools to buy that way.

The Op has learned her lesson but to all the people that read this :All trainers and farriers and vets are NOT created equal so do your homework and be a responsible consumer.

There's nothing like the Rockies in the springtime... Nothing like the freedom in the air... And there ain't nothing better than draggin calves to the fire and there's nothing like the smell of burning hair. -Brenn Hill
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post #4 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Reaver View Post
I was absolutely appalled by this woman's behavior and even had to report her for her actions!
Report her to who?

Unless it weighs a ton... it's just a horse. Draft horse motto.
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post #5 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 02:58 PM
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That sucks, some people just don't have a lot of patience with animals. Our local vet, despite him being very very good and knowing his job, can be quite rough with the horses and give them a belt if they move at all. He's a horribly grumpy person to begin with, but he's a lot better than some other vets around.

I had a bad farrier experience last year. I wasnt there at the time, my friend was looking after the horses because I was away. The farrier got his apprentice to the Millie. Now I know he may not have been very experienced, but he failed to recognise that she had the start of signs of laminitis, and barely even trimmed her hooves, they looked like they hadnt even been done. Even if he was an apprentice, our main farrier really should have been looking over what he was doing.
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post #6 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 03:13 PM
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Wow I'm really sorry this happened to you. I'm a trimmer and can't imagine ever striking someone's horse - not with a hand, and especially not with a tool. I even feel rotten if I yell and growl at a horse! Part of being a trimmer or a farrier is understanding the animal you're working on. You have to have patience, understanding, and compassion. When horses are foundered, arthritic, abused, neglected, young, sick, etc. it's all the more important to just take a deep breath, scratch the horse on the chest and try it again.

If the horse is truly dangerous to myself or the handler I just ask them to put the horse away, give suggestions for training or where to find a trainer, and offer to come back in a few weeks when they've had time to work through the issues. Who benefits when you lose your cool and strike a horse?

In all fairness, there are always 2 sides of a story, and we're only hearing one. I guess nobody really knows EXACTLY what happened or why, but striking a client's horse is always wrong. I won't even put a chain over the nose or use a twitch, or ANYTHING that could become a liability. It is not my responsibility to discipline the horse. Sometimes when you strike a horse, they strike back, and that's when people get hurt. What if she'd cracked that horse on the butt with the rasp, he ran forward and trampled you and you were seriously injured or killed during the scuffle?

On the first visit, I discuss with horse owners the fact that sometimes good horses act badly and when that happens, everybody needs to take a second to breathe, regroup, do some ground work if necessary, then try again. I don't like it when owners are jerking on a chain or smacking the horse because it makes it dangerous for ME, and likewise if the farrier/trimmer disciplines the horse, it can be dangerous for the handler.

I'm really sorry for your rotten situation. I see you added the farrier's name to the tag line of this thread. I hope she's learned through this experience how important it is to maintain a professional disposition always, regardless of what happens.
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post #7 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by nrhareiner View Post
If someone needs/wants the name of the farrier in question please do it through PM. Thanks
Is that the farriers name in the tags?

Unless it weighs a ton... it's just a horse. Draft horse motto.
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post #8 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 03:36 PM
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I have a question - what is an acceptable form of a discipline for a farrier to use on your horse if the horse misbehaves?

It doesn't take much to get my horse to mind my farrier (Solon absolutely loves him). But when Solon starts fussing, my farrier will pop him in his the side with his elbow or call out his name very sternly.

I'm always of the, there's two sides to every story. I'd think it'd be important to find out her side before passing any judgment on her as a farrier/trimmer.

I tell you though, the horses I have had to see my farrier put up with. I think too many people don't work with their horses enough to stand and behave for the farrier/trimmers. It can be really dangerous work for them. I've seen a farrier smack a horse with the lead rope and deservedly so.

Unless it weighs a ton... it's just a horse. Draft horse motto.
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post #9 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Solon View Post
I have a question - what is an acceptable form of
Unless my horse is doing something that will endanger my farrier, then the only acceptable form of discipline is the discipline I give. Whatever it may be. That being said I highly trust my farrier and would never question his choices in discipline, although I must say, he is the quietest and most patient farrier I have ever known.

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post #10 of 55 Old 02-16-2010, 03:46 PM
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^^She did tell the farrier that yelling/screaming is acceptable, or a firm "stand" would be sufficient to get the horse under control. She also told the farrier expressly NOT to hit the horse. I think a shrill whistle with a "quit it" might have been enough, and he wouldn't have had to even stand up.

Have you ever been hit with a rasp? That alone would deter me from using the farrier again. I can understand a firm pop on the butt with a hand or a lead rope, but even running my hand along anything less than a very dull rasp is uncomfortable. I wouldn't want to slap my horse with it.
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