Do you have a plan should you become injured and unable to work?

A video is making the rounds on social media and getting a fair amount of attention in the equine community. Yet, it’s deserving of greater consideration among farriers.

Although it’s not an easy video to watch, it’s a must-see for those who work around horses day in and day out. There’s no doubt that there are far too many folks who have experienced something very similar, or worse.

In the video below, the horse obviously is anxious even before the man tries to touch it with a rope. When the rope does make contact, the horse goes after him with its hind legs. After the commotion subsides, the man is fortunate to escape with just a left leg that’s dragging behind him.

Less than 5 seconds go by during the entire episode.

For the sake of this discussion, it really doesn’t matter what the man was doing or how he was doing it. The real point is that in the time that it takes you to blink an eye, you can find yourself severely hurt and unable to fulfill your obligations to your family and your clients. An injury such as the one that the man in the video suffered will put you out of commission for an extended period of time.

Upon seeing the video, Bow, Wash., farrier Shane Westman asked members of the Farrier Business Page on Facebook some very pertinent questions.

  • What is your plan for medical care?
  • How do you pay for your living expenses?
  • Who takes care of your clients?
  • How do you retain your clients if you are out for an extended period?
  • What is your plan?

These are incredibly important questions to consider — and act upon. According to the American Farriers Journal Business Practices Survey, 83% of full-time farriers carry health insurance. Yet, a whopping 73% of you do not have disability insurance.

You don’t have to suffer a life-threatening injury to face significant financial hardship. A simple broken arm or leg generally takes 6 to 8 weeks to heal, depending on the location and severity of the fracture or the necessary surgical procedure.

Can your family and practice withstand 2 months without the income you provide? What if it’s a more serious injury? How long can you afford to be unable to work? It’s a question you must be able to answer.

“We need a multi-faceted plan,” Westman says. “We need to care for ourselves and medical expenses. We need to care for our business and retain our clients. And, we need to do it all without digging a hole or getting into serious financial strife or destroying long-term retirement plans.”

Do you have a plan? The welfare of you, your family and your business depend on it.



Posted by Dhari Al-harbi on Wednesday, April 22, 2015