Horse Health

Finding A Good Farrier

September 24, 2009

How can you find and keep a good farrier for your horse?

FarrierFrom the American Farrier’s Association, an AQHA education marketing alliance member

Finding a good farrier is very important to your horse’s hoof health. Follow these quick tips to make sure you find the right horseshoer:

  • Farriers do not have to be certified to call themselves horseshoers, so it’s best to look for a farrier who has gone farther in his or her training and education and earned certification. The American Farrier’s Association has three levels of certification.
  • Certified Farriers (CF) have one year of farrier experience and have passed a two-part practical exam.

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  • Certified Tradesman Farriers (CTF) have at least two years of experience, having completed the CF level and passed practical exams that include written and hands-on demonstration of skills in a timed situation.
  • Certified Journeyman Farriers (CJF) is the highest level that a farrier can obtain. Farriers with that designation have at least two years of experience and have completed the CF level. They have displayed an in-depth knowledge and highly developed practical skills. They must pass written and hands-on practical exams, including forging a shoe that fits to a predetermined foot pattern.

If you board your horse, ask horse owners you see with well-shod horses whom they use. Don’t be afraid to ask potential farriers for references.
Call the American Farrier’s Association and ask for a reputable and certified farrier in your area.

  • Call and explain your situation to a farrier and schedule a visit. Questions you might ask:
  • How long have you been in business?
  • Do you perform corrective shoeing?
  • Do you make your own shoes?
  • Are you certified?
  • How long was your training?
  • Would you explain your pricing?
  • Take note of the way your farrier treats your horse. If he treats your horse respectfully, you might return the favor with good tips.
  • Stay on a schedule so the farrier can catch anything that goes wrong with your horse’s feet or so he can continue to correct the feet.

Do you know about all the benefits of becoming a member of AQHA? Learn how you can enroll in riding programs, show at AQHA events and get discounts with AQHA corporate partners bypurchasing your AQHA membership.