shortage of farriers

henryhorn

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Here in Devon we have a superb farrier but he doesn't want to do the trimming involved in the main herd, because they live out 24/7 it's easier to go into a pen in between two fields and trim there, or the horses get very stressed if brought inside away from their usual environment. I understand his reasoning, when he can earn £100 an hour for specialist remedial work, standing in a field isn't an option. He's happy to shoe our comp horses but I am struggling to find anyone for trims. We had a female farrier but she seemed nervous round the horses and flatly refused to do any horse bigger than 15.2 hh, so as most are that was no use.
I'm now getting to panic stations with the list needing doing building up, yet can I find a farrier? I've rung at least 8 on the register, four of whom live within our town, but all are fully booked, and that's before I've even told them what I needed, just enough customers already.
Someone said around London areas farriers are struggling to find customers, is that true?
I've managed to persuade one local chap to come as an emergency measure but ideally I need a newly qualified one building up a business.
Another said he would come but he isn't a normal farrier, he says he's a remedial barefoot one, which spooked me a bit, I just need plain old trimming!
Is there a shortage of farriers? or is it just here in Devon?
 

TGM

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I'm must say I'm surprised that your farrier won't do your trims - if there are lots of trims in one place then it is usually financially rewarding work as there is no outlay on shoes or gas, just wear and tear on the rasp! Perhaps your farrier isn't charging enough for trimming!

I think part of your problem in finding a new farrier is that is is the busiest time of year for most of them - most horses are in full work and competing and going a shorter time before shoeing, and now the grass is through everyone wants their horses trimmed as well. We can't take on any more work at the moment and have turned several potential new customers down in the last fortnight.

Good luck with finding someone to trim your horses though. Have you asked the FRC for a list of newly qualified farriers in your area, who might be more keen to take on the work?
 

henryhorn

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Hurray, one of the farriers I left message with has just found me a newly established chap who is coming this week. He sounded lovely on the phone and the farrier said he was good too..
I think some of the problem is we already have a farrier who shoes the comp horses, and others think perhaps we should stick with the one, but he really doesn't have time as he's very much in demand by two large equine clinics and when you compare the £20 a trim against £100 an hour of really interesting remedial work it's easy to see which he prefers.
He is the best farrier we've ever had so I would go to any lengths to keep him happy. His apprentice had an accident leaving him struggling to cope on his own, so the time taken for up to 30 trims is just more time than he can afford to offer.
It's going to take us a few visits to get them all in shape and for us to get to know each other, but hopefully this will be the problem solved...thanks for the advice.
grin.gif
 

dieseldog

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Well according to TheFarrier they only earn £15K a year.....

No wonder you were struggling to find one.
 

TequilaMist

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Only 15 k a year!!Know if thats what farriers said they earn up here they either don't do a lot or are crap and no-one uses them and tbh theres such a sortage up here that even crap ones would/do get used!My farrier LOL when I suggested he made £500 week said he wouldn't get out of bed for that.He and wife have 1/2 holidays aboard a year.Don't grudge him it hard work.TBH probably only way he can get away from the phone calls begging him to shoe
Must admit would be annoyed if my farrier only wanted to do my shod horses and not the trimmed only ones as well as they all need care .Understand being busy but would still expect them to cover ALL my horses.(maybe cos don't have as many as you tho)
 

dieseldog

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[ QUOTE ]
They earn significantly more than that!!!! And they deserve to, they work bloody hard.

[/ QUOTE ]

LoL I know they do
grin.gif
 

TheFarrier

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A statsistic was taken and the average came out as 15k (i am assuming this is after all expenses and tax)

I didnt make that up it was done in connection with someone trying to fight the hunting ban and trying to proove it would put a lot of farriers out of business
 
D

Donkeymad

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[ QUOTE ]
My farrier LOL when I suggested he made £500 week said he wouldn't get out of bed for that

[/ QUOTE ]

Possibly that is pre tax, costs etc, but who knows?

Henryhorn, we have a fair few listed near us but I could also not find one to come out a while ago. My own farrier apparently does 60% trimming and 40% shoeing. Really worried me as he is now nearly 70 and thinking about retiring.
 

TequilaMist

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Don't think it was as we were talking about his pay was rather than what he makes before tax etc.
Mind you he earns it up early,back mid/late evening.Only takes a Sunday off.
Dread the day he retires as hes good with my lot One can actually be dangerous to shoe used to need sedated but he's worked on her and tbh scared others won't take the time/patience to do her.
 
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