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TOPIC: 13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ?

RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 02:48 #16

  • Alicia Thompson
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Dave Whitaker wrote:
Horshure,(anonymous?),

And that impressed person is just the type of client I would have no time for.

I shoe for one reason and one reason only, that being for betterment of long term soundness and enhancement of intended use of the horse. It's a great side benefit that it happens to throw a six figure income, don't get me wrong......

I guess we all have to decide individually where our priorities lie.......

Dave

Dave you totally explained my perspective. I don't want over-due hooves in my client list. If they don't care they can easily find a farrier that will care just as little.

I damn sure don't want to advertise to the 3 times a year crowd nor do I want the knowledgeable, caring horse owner thinking these NEGLECTED hooves represent my work.

I set out to ensure healthy hoof form, and rehab bad hooves as much as possible not to add fodder to the "shoes are evil" believers.
Forget thinking outside the box, instead realize there is no box.
- Alicia Thompson


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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 03:08 #17

  • Alicia Thompson
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Rick Talbert wrote:
I think anyone being too picky starting out is gonna shoot themselves in the foot. And with my way of doing things, I could loose more than 50% of my clients in a tsunami, and it probably would not hurt my bottom line income wise.:)

I can see your point. I am fortunate though I do my own clients evenings and weekends but for the last 1.5 years I have been working 5 days a weeks with a farrier that is only a few years from retiring. He is very open to both his clients and myself that he will be retiring in the next few years and all of them are quite eager to have his replacement getting quite familiar with their horses needs.

I will never be able to cover all the horses we do combined so with my own clients even if 30% of his stay with me I will be close to having a closed book.
Forget thinking outside the box, instead realize there is no box.
- Alicia Thompson


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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 04:21 #18

  • Rick Talbert
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mybluedanube wrote:
I can see your point. I am fortunate though I do my own clients evenings and weekends but for the last 1.5 years I have been working 5 days a weeks with a farrier that is only a few years from retiring. He is very open to both his clients and myself that he will be retiring in the next few years and all of them are quite eager to have his replacement getting quite familiar with their horses needs.

I will never be able to cover all the horses we do combined so with my own clients even if 30% of his stay with me I will be close to having a closed book.

Alicia, it sounds like you have nothing to worry about business wise. I commend you and respect your working under an established farrier for so long. I think this choice will pay huge dividends in the long run. I read somewhere that 90% of shoeing school graduates are out of business 5 years after graduating. I think the reason why, is that they are not adequately prepared, and they don't know how to run a business. Both of these problems that plague the majority of graduates that are too eager to be on their own, are taken care of when someone is wise enough to do what you have done. Good luck to you and don't sweat the small stuff!:D
Rick Talbert
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 04:54 #19

  • Joey Aczon
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Rick Talbert wrote:
I think we just have two different ways of looking at it. For what its worth, I will expand a little on my philosophy. I give my owners a choice, they are free to go ahead and schedule an appointment, or they can call when they are ready and take the next available time space. First come first serve. I will not keep track for them. I have had clients in the past who have tried the old, "I'd like to get you out here every 6 or 7 weeks, if you'll just give me a call beforehand." What happens is I get busy, and they get bumped back in order to take care of the owners who are calling and in need. They get bumped and bumped and bumped, and then you think geez, I was supposed to call that guy a month ago, oh well, maybe he has found someone else by now. Then you run face to face into the guy at the grocery store, and he gives you a hard time while you ramble around off guard making excuses. That taught me that I have enough on my mind, and I am not a very good secretary. I have never felt right about calling someone to "remind" them that their horses are due. I have agreed to do that before at the owners request, and it still felt like a move of desperation and pressure. Its just not in my nature. I hate talking on the phone, and it is a big enough pain in the rear to just return phone calls, much less give reminder calls. We are all adults. I expect my clients to be an adult and be responsible enough to keep their appointments without me having to call and remind them. I have a 15 minute rule. If I get there and no one shows or calls within 15 minutes I leave. I don't call, I leave. They can call and reschedule if they like. This teaches them to show up. I have plenty of people who choose to make their next appointment while I am at the barn, but those who want to wait and call don't bother me. I would have to count my regular clients who schedule their next appointment, but I know that at last count I had 287 horse owners on the books averaging 5 horses each. Thats almost 1500 horses. (the majority of which are trims). I quit taking new clients about 6 months ago, unless they sound very attractive on the phone, lol. But I stay booked up ussually 3 or more weeks in advance with the system I have now. I have never advertised, and I think this system has worked well for me. I stay booked with whatever God sends me. I think anyone being too picky starting out is gonna shoot themselves in the foot. And with my way of doing things, I could loose more than 50% of my clients in a tsunami, and it probably would not hurt my bottom line income wise.:)

I must appologize, I was quoting you, but addressing Alicia.

That is very much along the lines of how I think, I'm just not near as busy as you are. I have the time to be flexible. Setting my schedule on a weekly basis really cuts no-shows and cancellations.

Although, as I'm writing this I'm realizing that my time is getting harder to schedule and I'm going to need to start scheduling a little further ahead of time. I am already feeling a little growing pains as I'm having to tell clients that have become accustomed to my availability that I'm booked for a week straight. (but not often enough still)
Joey Aczon

Over-specialize and breed in weakness... It's slow death. :cool:

"I never make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect." — Gibbon
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 05:14 #20

  • Alicia Thompson
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Rick Talbert wrote:
Alicia, it sounds like you have nothing to worry about business wise. I commend you and respect your working under an established farrier for so long. I think this choice will pay huge dividends in the long run. I read somewhere that 90% of shoeing school graduates are out of business 5 years after graduating. I think the reason why, is that they are not adequately prepared, and they don't know how to run a business. Both of these problems that plague the majority of graduates that are too eager to be on their own, are taken care of when someone is wise enough to do what you have done. Good luck to you and don't sweat the small stuff!:D

Thanks Rick that means a lot to me. It is amazing the things I learn everyday even if it isn't a shoeing technique. He has been 35 years in the business so has most things shoeing, client relations, book keeping, scheduling ect down to a fine art. Sometimes he so smooth in his work even watching closely I cannot figure out how he does something then months later I just find myself doing it the exact same way. It's pretty cool. lol
Forget thinking outside the box, instead realize there is no box.
- Alicia Thompson


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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 05:29 #21

  • Rick Talbert
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Joey Aczon wrote:
I must appologize, I was quoting you, but addressing Alicia.

That is very much along the lines of how I think, I'm just not near as busy as you are. I have the time to be flexible. Setting my schedule on a weekly basis really cuts no-shows and cancellations.

Although, as I'm writing this I'm realizing that my time is getting harder to schedule and I'm going to need to start scheduling a little further ahead of time. I am already feeling a little growing pains as I'm having to tell clients that have become accustomed to my availability that I'm booked for a week straight. (but not often enough still)

Joey, no apology needed. Really to be honest I felt like a jerk after posting what I did. I have never on this site before revealed numbers like I did, and I think doing so was poor taste on my part. I think I stay busy for many reasons, but it really has a lot to do with the area I happen to find myself in. If I lived in some of the areas in which many of you do, I would be singing a different tune.
Rick Talbert
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 06:39 #22

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Dave Whitaker wrote:
Mr. Talbert, with all due respect, if you aren't trying to be funny, and this is how you feel, you have no business working under anyone's horses..... and THAT'S JMO......
You ever notice nothing good ever comes after when someone says "with all do respect", lol. But I was not trying to be funny, and I stand by that comment. So I guess I better be lookin for another line of work then, lol. I just don't see why I should care or why I should think it my concern. There are so many more important things to worry about than this. You are never gonna get every owner to be on a consistent 5 or 6 week schedule period. Why get your panties in a wad over the ones that aren't gonna do it? If you are so concerned with the horse, then maybe you would want to see that the job gets done properly when it does get done, instead of dropping the client because of your principles, then having those horses go on to probably not getting done at all, getting done inappropriately, or maybe the owner will just start doing them himself. If the welfare of the horse is your squable, then you should be willing to help the horse when you can as often as the owner is willing. I run my business, the same as if it were an old fashioned blacksmith shop that was open to the public to bring a horse in and get it done. Everything is first come first serve. I do get rid of owners with bad attitudes or dangerous horses, but other than that, I am happy to help anyone whether they are rich or poor, a 150,000 dollar horse or a 150 dollar horse gets the same job. I don't pass judgement and say, because you didn't get your horses done 4 weeks ago that makes you a bad owner and I won't help your horse. That is not smart, and not a good way to make friends, lol. You never know what someone's personal reasons are. They could be paying me and getting their lights shut off to get it done at 10 week intervals. I just do the best job I can when I am asked to do it. Oh but let one of them say, "boy that little toe crack just won't go away will it?" lol. I am quick to say back "Well sh-it Johny, its only been 14 weeks since I seen you last! lol" But I guess I should just quit and find some line of work better suited for my layed back personality:rolleyes:

I think the worse thing you can do for your reputation is have someone see these overdue feet out there and ask "who does your feet?", with the answer being you. You can bet a new nipper that they won't bother to tell them that they let them go 14 weeks! As soon as you lose the opportunity to do just 2 new horses because someone sees the condition of "your work" in the field, you have LOST money by continually doing this horse at 14 weeks. All you have is your reputation.......
that is pretty insecure. Just as many will see those horses hooves at 4 weeks, and firing the client will loose those potential new clients as well. Most owners will get you more business than you can handle because of your professionalism, your communication skills, and the way you go about your job. If you are good at what you do, people are gonna love you and word is gonna spread. But make someone mad over some petty insecurity, and they are not gonna view it in the same way you do:mad:. The bad experience they had with you will be told over and over. Not as many clients as you would think switch farriers based on the "gee your horse has pretty hooves who does your work" ;) situation, it happens, but decisions are ussually based on one owner telling another how wonderful you are. Do your best and treat people right and you shouldn't worry that someone might see john q's horse's hooves when they are past due :eek:(ussually people know john q is a cheapskate anyway). The good clients who keep their horses done on time are ussually the ones people are paying attention to anyway.
Rick Talbert
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 07:54 #23

  • 13puppet
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I deal with this on a regular basis and have devised a program to help US as farriers and them as Clients.
My regular clients are 6-8 weeks on shod horses
8-10 weeks on trims

my program states that any client who allows their animal to become more than 2 full weeks over due will pay a $10 on top of my regualr fee per horse.

Also I tell those who stray from a schedule to contact me as service is needed at an increased rate.

hope it helped i has worked for me, if needed i have a whole policy i can email you.
Bo Crotta - Equine Specialist
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 19:24 #24

pro-rate your work
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 21:48 #25

  • Dave Whitaker
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Rick Talbert wrote:
I just don't see why I should care or why I should think it my concern.
.

Mr. Talbert, I appreciate and understand your comments. We will never agree on any of this, (nor do we have to).

Dave


"Everything is for sale......some are just harder to buy than others......"
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 23:12 #26

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Dave Whitaker wrote:
Horshure,(anonymous?),

And that impressed person is just the type of client I would have no time for.

I shoe for one reason and one reason only, that being for betterment of long term soundness and enhancement of intended use of the horse. It's a great side benefit that it happens to throw a six figure income, don't get me wrong......

I guess we all have to decide individually where our priorities lie.......

Dave

Dave.....Andy Dana BA. CJF AFA.


I could write a book about the all the good folks you would fail to meet or know by keeping that standard....each to there own.
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 20 Jan 2010 23:39 #27

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Horshure wrote:
Dave.....Andy Dana BA. CJF AFA.


I could write a book about the all the good folks you would fail to meet or know by keeping that standard....each to there own.

Andy,

I would love to read your book :)

Dave


"Everything is for sale......some are just harder to buy than others......"
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 21 Jan 2010 04:07 #28

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I give my advice on shoeing periods. Most customers take it. Those who don't, I can't change it. The Big guy I fixed the lateral quarter crack on, I was out to it the first of January. Re set the shoes, crack growing down nicely. Owner really like my work. After done, he wanted to extend the time to 3 months so he could have my work when he starts to do some driving. I said no. If I exended the time, I run the chance of loosing my work. I explained it to him. I also said after the crack was fixed and he again took over doing his own horses, he could do what he wanted, until then, it was my way or the highway.
Mikel Dawson, RJF

(Denmark)
What part of "NO" don't you understand!!

Caution: Watch for hoof in mouth disease!!!
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 23 Jan 2010 21:35 #29

Dave Whitaker;189830 wrote:
And Alicia,

I keep the horses in my practice on my schedule, depending on what is in the horses best interest. Most are on a 6 week schedule +/-, with some as short as 3 weeks and one old guy on 12 weeks.

I think the worse thing you can do for your reputation is have someone see these overdue feet out there and ask "who does your feet?", with the answer being you. You can bet a new nipper that they won't bother to tell them that they let them go 14 weeks! As soon as you lose the opportunity to do just 2 new horses because someone sees the condition of "your work" in the field, you have LOST money by continually doing this horse at 14 weeks. All you have is your reputation.......

Alicia,

Heed Daves words of wisdom. This will happen if you let your clients run you. Granted you have to work with people as much as you can, but don't do what you know is wrong.

You are justified in charging more in cases like you mentioned - just make sure it is a lot more. And explainthat it is their horse you have to consider, and that you would be happy to just trim on that schedule ( if you would be ) but it is just not fair to the horse to leave shoes on that long.

Rick
Rick Shepherd

Although we know what we believe, we may only believe what we know. Dr William Moyers
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RE:13 and 14 week cycles shod... can I just say "no shoes for you!" ? 23 Jan 2010 21:52 #30

  • Alicia Thompson
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Well the update. I went out today and the bare horses were out of balance but not horrifying due to having lots of rough ice in the paddocks for the last 2 months. One shod horse looked... fine really... he looked due but not over due. The other one that was shod the hooves were jammed and flared and as a result he was WAY WAY out of balance. He moved dramatically better once trimmed and balanced.

Since all the others can pull off a longish cycle (we settled on 10 weeks for the winter) we decided to pull the one horses shoes. He will do much better this way as it will allow some wear to the medial toe where he flares.

I was floored by how good one of the shod horses did on a 14.5 week cycle. I think his feet may be in better condition and I actually had to widen the heels on his upright hoof so it certainly didn't do harm.

thanks for all the help
Forget thinking outside the box, instead realize there is no box.
- Alicia Thompson


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