How can you find and keep a good farrier for your horse?
From the American Farrier’s Association, an AQHA education marketing alliance member
- 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.
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