Advice From Those Who Have Worked Both Sides

Four equine veterinarians with farrier backgrounds give their thoughts on how to avoid problems between the two professions and keep the client out of the middle when disagreements arise.

It has been said that in order to better understand someone’s viewpoints and experiences, you should walk a mile in their shoes. For equine veterinarians, who better to understand the farrier’s perspective than those who have picked up feet and performed farriery? In this article, we share the perspectives of four veterinarians who also are farriers. Their experiences will help you gain insight on building and maintaining good relations with the farriers you work with.      

Leave Your Ego In Your Truck And Office


By David Ramey, DVM 

I enjoy discussing veterinarian-farrier relationships. This subject reminds me of a quote by the legendary Baltimore Sun writer H.L. Mencken: “For every complex problem there is a solution that is clear, simple and wrong.” There’s not an easy answer to the question on improving veterinarian-farrier relationships because we are complex individuals.

In a general sense, one thing to consider for improving your teamwork with farriers is to realize that the relationship requires two individuals who are willing to work together and are not as concerned with who is running the show. There’s so much of this when you get into the economics of the horse business. Whether it be with veterinarians, farriers or horse trainers, there can be a desire to maintain hegemony over your client base. If you are perceived as being in charge, the expert or decisive, that’s a good place to be in the relationship — because then your clients rely on you, and if they rely on you, they’re…

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