Frankly Speaking: What I Wish They’d Taught In Farrier School

A few weeks back, we emailed a single question survey to a number of veteran farriers. We asked them to look back at their farrier school experiences and identify the one thing they wished they’d learned that would have helped their careers and would help new students get started on the right foot.

If you think the majority wished they’d spent more time on forging, trimming or modifying shoes, think again. Instead, 27% would have liked more hours on running the business side of a farrier practice. They recognized that knowing how to trim and shoe is only part of running a successful farrier business.

While farrier schools represent a fountain of knowledge, teaching time is limited, and instructors can’t teach every aspect of what it takes to become a successful farrier. But looking back, here are a few items veteran farriers felt could have helped prepare them better for their careers.

The most recent AFJ Farrier Business Practices Survey indicates 70% of full-time farriers attended farrier school for an average of 12 weeks, this was followed up with 26 months apprenticing with a veteran farrier. (If you would like to be part of our 2018 Farrier Business Practices Survey, go to the AFJ website and type in

More Business Skills

Some 13% asked for more instruction on how to manage their income, while 6% would have liked to have learned how to start saving for retirement when they launched their farrier careers. Others would have liked more…

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Frank lessiter

Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has spent more than 50 years in the agricultural and equine publishing business. The sixth generation member to live on the family’s Centennial farm in Michigan, he is the Editor/Publisher of American Farriers Journal.

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