Has the local equine economy improved in your area? Most significantly, how has it impacted your footcare practice?
How hard you feel the recession is directly related to your clientele. If you shoe for "lower middle class", you're probably feeling the pinch. On the other hand, if you're shoeing for the high-end upper class, you probably haven't even noticed a slow down in business. Then there are all degrees of business levels in between.
I just lost my 3 top clients, who accounted for half my income last year. Those horses went somewhere, and someone else will be shoeing them now, but for me it's a major blow because I don't see any new people taking their place. My business was already down by about a third from 3 years ago. I'm going to retire.
All you have to do is ask that question to a farrier supply and I am sure they will tell you sales are way off from before the the recession. You have many different levels of horse ownership and some will always be able to give top notch care for their beloved equine and many who have had to make difficult decisions about continued owning and care of them.
My local equine economy is doing just fine. The economy has had little impact on my footcare practice.
—Esco Buff, PhD, APF, CF
Horse shoeing business is off about 80% due to economy. People feel horses aren't worth the money with no horse market.
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