How can I create a safe place for my horse to be worked on by the farrier?
Not all of us have the facilities and budget to create a dedicated farrier’s bay, but I’m sure you can find a spot that works well and is safe for horse and farrier. Here are some things to consider when you have your horse’s farrier visit!
Find a level surface. This is necessary so your farrier can get an accurate picture of your horse’ hooves and legs.
Have proper footing. A level-ish dirt area will eventually become a super lumpy and uneven surface. A concrete base is ideal, mats are good too!
Pavers work also as a level surface. Usually.
Help your farrier stay out of the sun, wind, rain, etc. A covered area is ideal if you can make it happen! The area should still be ventilated well if your farrier’s area is inside.
Don’t forget about lighting - If you horse is shod, light will always help the person that is putting nails into his feet.
Eliminate clutter. With the rolling tools and stands that a farrier typically uses, there’s already a lot of stuff around your horse. Do everyone a favor and give your farrier plenty of room so that your horse won’t bonk into him or his tools while he works.
This is a designated farrier's area at a show grounds. Pretty nice! Covered, mats, railings, ample space.
If your farrier’s area is a cross tie that has a wall or rail behind your horse, make sure there’s enough room between your horse’s bum and the wall. Your farrier probably doesn’t want to be working on those hind feet while his head is squashed against the wall.
Have water close by, a trash can near, and convenient parking. A farrier’s rig is his workshop, so the truck should be close to the work areas. It also helps if you have a magnet to help with clean up!
How else do you make your horse’s farrier comfortable and happy?