Desperate for a new farrier - how to find one?

Alysoun Mahoney

Hi everyone --

I've had a number of exchanges in the main forum about my horse Charlie, a 13yo OTTB I've had since 2016, who was diagnosed with laminitis/founder on June 7, 2022. I've received tons of good advice -- but I increasingly fear that it will all be for naught if I don't find a new farrier asap -- and am hoping for ideas about how to find one.

When I lived in VA, my first farrier was excellent, and a trainer of other farriers. When she moved to AZ and I moved to MD, she referred me to one of her students. My horses had healthy hooves throughout those years.

When I was preparing to move to my current home in south central PA in early 2021, I of course asked my previous farriers for referrals, but they didn't have any. I asked my vet, but the only person they gave me at the time was not taking new clients.

The first farrier who trimmed Charlie (and his then-two herd mates) I found through the American Farriers Association website -- but he didn't leave enough height in Charlie's hoof from the heel through the toe pillars, so Charlie was walking on his soles for two months until his hooves grew out. The second farrier I found through a local equestrian FB group, and was recommended by many. Things seemed to be going well for a year, until Charlie foundered -- and the feedback I'm getting indicates that Charlie needs more expertise than she has.

I reached out to my current vet again, since they now know how serious this is. They have given me three other names -- but as of this writing, the only one of the three who has responded with availability does not seem to have professional credentials, and did not seem to appreciate the gravity of the situation. 

I have received great feedback from Daisy Bicking, who was recommended by several in this group -- and it turns out she has trained and worked with my first two farriers. So my dream is for her to be my farrier -- and she is trying to figure out if she can make it work -- but she is in high demand and I don't know as of this writing whether it will work with the short timeframe I have.

Are there any other sources I can turn to, to hire a properly qualified farrier? Given that Charlie was last trimmed on June 2, and given the current state of his hooves, I fear he only has a couple weeks' window before this could turn into a life-threatening situation. The farrier I've been using for the last year has me on her calendar for July 5, but I'm afraid she may do more harm than good if she trims him again.

Hoof photos, x-rays and more in my case history folder and photo album.

Thank you!!!

Alysoun M in PA