Thanks to my work, I get to talk to lots of farriers, many of who are some of the best in the industry. So I thought I would have a post series dedicated to some of the conversations I have with these farriers as some of them are really interesting and I think a lot of them are things horse owners should know!
So todays post is about how much different farriers charge for their services. Now, having horses is a very expensive hobby. So a lot of us are always tempted to save money where we can. However, after this post, you might feel differently.
Most people’s automatic thought about farriers who charge less is that they must do a worse job than those who charge more. Which seems logical. You don’t expect your £10 jeans to last as long or be the same quality as a £50 pair of jeans. However, in the conversation I was part of with some farriers, this didn’t seem to be the case. Excluding specialist and remedial cases, what the farrier charges for a set of shoes doesn’t really reflect how good a job they do.
However, what they did go on to say was that farriers who charge more, tend to carry a wider range of items as they invest this extra money back into their business. This means that if your horse develops a problem, however big or small, a farrier who charges more for a standard set of shoes is more likely to have something in their van that day to help solve the problem. This is important as for the majority (if not all) problems a farrier is faced with, the quicker he can do something to improve the condition, the better the prognosis.
Obviously, this is all opinion, based on farriers they know in the industry, but it really is an interesting idea. And actually, even when I think back to various farriers I have used and seen, those who charge less, tend to have a smaller van with less in it. So there must be something in this theory.
So even if your friends farrier is cheaper than yours, if you have a problem, your farrier is more likely to be able to help right away. Rather than have to go away to buy/order bits and pieces and then come back another day.