So, I just bought a horse in this area, had horses in another area, and had a great farrier there that came in recommendation, but now i need to find a good one here. I guess I just assumed I would call several farriers, have them come out and look at my horses' feet, and tell me what their plans would be. Sort of like interviewing for a job, right? That is, after all, what it is, and I want the best person for the job.
So my question, is it unreasonable to 'interview' farriers for the job? Just to come out and look and talk before I make a decision on who to go with? My brain automatically goes to "if they aren't willing to interview for the job, they aren't worth it" is that harsh? What would you ask a farrier when looking for a new one?
I've never heard of interviewing farriers.
When I moved area I went on personal reccomendation, phoned farrier and checked his qualifications. They came out and put some fronts on Reeco. I didnt like the work of the first farrier so never had him back. Second farrier talked my ear off but did an amazing job on Reecos feet so have stuck with him.
Farriers around here have more business than they can handle. If you want to get a farrier just to come out and look at your horse, most would do it expecting the same payment as a trim, but if you made any hint that it was an interview, I doubt you would get anyone to even call you back.
^^^^pretty much that:-(
From my own personal experience, in trying to find someone to rehab my severely foundered horse, the two most highly recommended AND qualified were the two that nearly killed him and I mean "killed" literally.
The Pete Ramey guy did a great job on my other three, the Ric Redden-schooled guy only worked on my foundered horse.
Had the foundered horse not been in the mix, I would have thought both these guys were the best thing since a slice of home made coconut cream pie at the local diner where I grew up. As it were, their "Legends in the Own Minds" selves, went about things THEIR way, which were both wrong and everybody, including the vet (and his X-rays), wasn't sure this horse would make it. He is finally on his way to a good recovery.
The best person to trim my horses is me but my back won't let me do that anymore, so the next best are two brothers with very little formal schooling, ten years experience, a lot of work ethic and common sense, and by gosh they listened to the vet regarding how to initially trim the foundered horse.
If you don't have a horse with special hoof needs, you shouldn't have problems finding someone.
If you do have a horse with special hoof needs, you will find out just how smart 90% of these great farriers and trimmers are not.
That was the best "yes, I guess not" answer I can give. If you don't like what the first person does, immediately start the hunt for someone else; don't wait until the horse needs trimmed again.
I wish you the very best in finding someone for the needs of your horse:?
Instead of asking to interview why not ask him to go see him trim a few horses? You can see his work first hand and ask him a few questions in conversation, like where he went to school or if he has done any corrective work.
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I would get recommendations from other horse owners that you respect, vets, even a horse owner at the show or park that you like how their horse's feet are trimmed.
Possibly call the selected farrier and see if you could go to where they are working, and watch them trim or shoe a client's horse.
Also see if they are members of the American Farriers Association, maybe they are accredited in some way by that association. Just because they are members doesn't necessarily mean anything, but the association offers lots of continuing education, and I personally think if a farrier is a member it shows some professionalism. I also would look for a full time farrier, not a weekend warrior.
Thanks everyone. I am going on recommendations from lots of different horse people. I'm getting opinions all over the board. Lady A is great with the horses, but she flakes a lot. Dude B is consistent and a good farrier, but I have only been able to get ine opinion on him. Dude C is a journeyman farrier but is awful with the horses. I do have a horse with somewhat special needs, she has high low syndrome, I guess, never heard it called that before. It isn't that bad, but one heel is noticeably higher than the other.
Lady A said she'd call me back, I ended up calling her, no answer. Got a Facebook message today saying she would call me today.
Dude B said if I don't hear from him by the end of the week, to give him a call. I did and he answered and we set something up for today. I highly value consistency and work ethic.
I guess, personally, I would not at all mind interviewing for what I do. I teach lessons, and I will go out and evaluate horse and rider free of charge, let them know what I think and what my plans would be, etc.
I'm honestly surprised that it isn't common practice to meet with farriers before letting them trim my horse's feet. I think it's a pretty big decision, and if you get the job, you'll have it for years to come.
Good to know, though, thanks everyone!
Well the new farrier i found just came out to take a look at my horses and see what needed to be done. He didnt trim them at that time but discussed what he was going to do at the next APPT. Hes coming out tuesday this coming week. I wasnt charged for the first visit it was free. If by chance i dont like his work i wont have him back but i dont think that will be the case.
That's exactly what my new potential farrier did this morning too. He came out to look at the extent of her club foot and discussed his plans for her, risks involved concerning tendon strain if too much is taken off too quickly. He suggested chiropractic care for her. Said he'd prefer to keep her barefoot because of the frequency with which we'll be trimming her feet and because she'll be ridden 99% of the time in a sand arena. He said he could come out every 4 weeks or he could show me how to rasp them in between and come out every 8 weeks. He didn't come expecting to trim her feet, just to look at her in person. Loved it. The other farrier hasn't even called me back yet.
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