Choosing the Right Farrier School

To help prospective students decide how to evaluate numerous educational opportunities, several school owners shared their insights on three different student background scenarios.

Someone who has no knowledge or background with horses,but believes becoming a farrierwould be a good occupation.

Bob Smith of the Pacific Coast Horseshoeing School in Sacramento, Calif., says this prospective student needs to ask school owners the following 
questions:

  1. Would my lack of horse experience prevent me from getting the most out of your school?
  2. How much time is spent on basic horsemanship and horse handling?
  3. Do you have a list of things I could do prior to attending your school that would help me get the most from my education?
  4. Will I be working on ill-mannered, unbroken horses?
  5. How much experience do the instructors have in the farrier profession?
  6. Do you have e-mail addresses or phone numbers of people with a similar limited experience that have gone through your school?
  7. How much experience do instructors have in the teaching profession?

“A student with no horse handling skills is going to have a tough time gaining the maximum amount of education from any school,” says Smith. “ It’s important that the instructors have many successful years shoeing and possess horsemanship skills related to ground handling horses.”

Mark Taylor, director of development at the Kentucky Horseshoeing School in Mt. Eden, Ky., recommends that students get involved with horses to determine if they like working with animals. This might include working with a local riding stable or volunteering…

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