Maryland Farrier Remains Successful by Adapting His Practice

First Shoeing for a Living subject details keys for longevity in the face of uncertainty


Farrier Takeaways

  • Pay close attention to what your body is telling you and act accordingly. Scaling back the number of horses and increasing rates can help lengthen your shoeing career.
  • If you can’t provide the service that’s required for your clients, it’s a good indication that you’re stretched too thin and need to scale back the number of horses that you’re working on.
  • Depositing your income into one account, then transferring a specified amount for business expenses into a separate account is a simple way of tallying your annual gross income.

When Frank Lessiter wrote the first “Shoeing for a Living” in 1992, American Farriers Journal launched what became its most popular feature series. Over the 28 years since its debut, the focus of each of the articles clearly mirrors Hall of Fame farrier Henry Heymering’s goals when he published the first 8-page issue of the magazine 45 years ago — bringing farriers together and eliminating isolationism.

“Shoeing for a Living” offers farriers an opportunity to be a fly on the barn wall and learn how their colleagues go about their daily work. Gary Faulkner, a Clarksville, Md., farrier who had been shoeing for 8 years after graduating from Danny Ward’s Eastern School of Farriery in Martinsville, Va., was Lessiter’s subject in the first installment. American Farriers Journal caught up with Faulkner to discuss how “Shoeing for a Living” has evolved for him after nearly 3 decades.

AFJ: In 1992, you were primarily shoeing show hunters. What disciplines are you

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