Finding A Good Farrier

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

From 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.

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