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Should Farriers Give Clients Tack Advice?

Some provide insight, some decline, but most recommend experts

Some horse owners might have a slew of equine professionals at their fingertips — trainers, instructors, veterinarians, nutritionists and fitters. Yet, others are on their own and trust one of the equine professionals they interact with — their farrier.

Because of this, farriers might be asked a number of questions that surpass hoof problems, such as tack.

This is a debated subject, though. Some farriers have a lot of riding experience and are willing and able to lend advice. Others feel that it’s not their place — even if they have experience.

Regardless, it’s important to know what questions can arise and how to handle them.

Your Place As A Farrier

There is a great deal of debate in the farrier world about how to respond to questions about tack.

Tom Stovall, an American Farrier’s Association Certified Journeyman Farrier from Comanche County, Texas, says clients never have been hesitant to ask him for help with a variety of things.

“A farrier is often asked to do emergency tack repairs,” he says, “simply because he or she is usually the only person at a racetrack, rodeo arena or show grounds who is immediately accessible and likely to have the tools and ability to fix something when it breaks, comes undone or needs repair. As a consequence and perhaps out of desperation, the public naturally gravitates to us.”

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When a client asks a farrier about tack, there are a number of ways to answer. You can share your experience, evaluate the horse…

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