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TOPIC: Unruly Horse Fee

Unruly Horse Fee 27 Sep 2004 01:41 #1

  • Jeremy D.
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I know many of you charge a fee for unruly horses. However my question is where do you draw that line? I will stop all work when it becomes unsafe. But when do we need to charge for the horse that won't stand still? Any help is appreciated, I'm still trying to figure this one out.

Thanks,
Jeremy
Leave the cave, kill something and drag it home. Dave Ramsey
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 27 Sep 2004 12:37 #2

Well Jeremy, I think you have to treat each incident differently but as far as a charge goes, I usually do the first 15 mins for free and then after that its 30.00 per hour. If one is really unruly I will not come back and when I correct (correct, not abuse) I do so on the bottom lip w/ a lip chain, it almost always seems to work very well, and if the owner has a problem w/ me using the lip chain or any other attention grabber, then I simply pack up and let the owner deal w/ it. This seems to work well for me.

Chris
Chris Clark

"No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle."
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 27 Sep 2004 18:06 #3

I won't work on a horse that won't stand. No if's and's or but's. I know they get squirrley, and fidgety and if a little attention getter doesn't work, I leave. My unruly horse fee is $30. That's what I charge for showing up, and for them waisting my time. $30 and then I pack up and I leave. I always give the owner the name and number of a good trainer, or the name and number of a local vet that can come out and sedate the horse the next time we schedule. I will not train a horse that is not my job. But if I was the sort to take the time and work with the horse I would charge for every 15 mins. It should take no longer than 15 min for me to trim a horse, so I would charge $30 (my trim price) for every 15 min that the horse is jumping around. If it takes 2 hours to get the work done then I would write up a bill for $240. I see it as every 15 min is taking away $30 that I could be getting working on good horses, I won't lose money trying to train one that may or may not kill me in the process.
Dave Purves CF :mad:
"Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects." Will Rogers

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vBimQu6Pxxs
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 02 Oct 2004 01:19 #4

I usually take into consideration the age of the horse and the experience/ attitude of the owner. My fee starts at 25.00 if I have to put my tools down to handle or correct the horse. At this point I try to educate the owner as to how I would like the horses to behave and what steps they can take to improve behaviour. I demonstrate and try again. 25.00 seems like a lot to have to put your tools down 1 time, but at least I get paid for teaching the owner what I want and expect.
If the horse is young I am more lenient on the fee. If the owner is inexperienced and continues to be unhelpful (ie: won't do what I have shown them to do or asked them to do) , the fee goes up.....and up......and up.....and UP!
If you can't hit their intelligence, hit the wallet.

Everyone has their own tolerance level. I look at it this way: 25.00 will not cover the cost of the wheelchair ramp that may be needed after working on a severely unruly beast. So at that point I stop, keep the fee and charge for the work that was completed and leave.
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 03 Oct 2004 08:39 #5

  • Red Amor
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Ive been walking away form em latley
I mean Im fair dinkum in that I,ll work with and through some nonsence but if there too bad or a nasty piece of work I,ll quit
Its just not worth gettin hurt no matter how much you ask for
and once you in hospital or convolessing in house you,ll hear nought from the owner of the horse that recked you mark my words

Sorry to sound so pesamistic but Ive been through what Im talking about on more than one accasion
Mind how ya go now
the only real insurance you have is your own common sence lettem call ya what ever they like , they,ll do that anyway
just tell them straight and walk away
Mark Anthony Amor
If we want anymore excrement like that outta you we'll squeese ya head :eek:
Mind how ya go now ;)
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 13 Oct 2004 23:22 #6

Personally I have never charged an "unruly horse fee"...though I'm sure I will start within the next year (still building up clientele). However, I do LIVE by words that my last farrier gave to me before I went to school a few years ago...

"ONE BAD HORSE IS NOT WORTH ALL THE GOOD
GOOD HORSES OUT THERE"!!!!!!

Margo
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 17 Feb 2005 13:09 #7

  • steuck92
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I will have to agree with Dave on the "thats not my job". If I have a bad horse and it trys to kill me I tell them "that I'm here to trim or shoe your horse not train it". I spend an hour charge them for an hour.
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 08 Mar 2005 20:35 #8

  • shoesofiron
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"Where do you draw the line?"

That's easy.
Anything more than a lead rope hanging from their halter is a restraint.
I charge a restraint fee.
It's based on time.
It's also based on mental anguish.
When I get done with a horse that needed restraint THE FIRST TIME, there's a note on the bill that the minor fee for restraining their horse was a courtesy. That fee is based on the severety of the restraint and how much more difficult it was to do than normal and how much more time was needed than normal and how badly it ended up screwing up my schedule and ruining my good humor, along with the owner's attitude about the bill. THe worse the attitude, the higher that per cent gets.
If the horse needs restraint the next time, I double it. No note, just "restraint fee".
I look at it this way:
When I get done, I ask myself if I still want to be doing this horse in a year.
If I don't, then I ****** myself out on fee increase until I would agree to keep doing that horse. If that is a monetary impractibility for the owner, so be it. But one thing I learned over the years is that those nasty-a** horses that don't get better wear on me mentally as well as physically - "oh nuts - gotta do Misty today again". And honestly, I don't like doing horses that have issues like that so if you really want me to do it well, you must really like me a lot because you'll be paying for my truck and my kids' tuition.
C.E.T.Y.L.E.
Charge 'Em 'Til You Like 'Em
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 08 Mar 2005 21:28 #9

  • Peggy Dolan
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I do charge a PITA fee for difficult horses. I ask new clients before I make an appointment, "Does your horse stand for the shoer?" If the horse adds more than 30 minutes to my time then I explain I'll add that time to the bill. I actually had a trim this morning that had the potential to require additional fees. The owner volunteered to pay more when I was done. Since it was my first time to trim the horse I went slow and tried to make it a pleasant experience. I left them with some handling tips and stretching instructions. If the horse is still a PITA next time, the cash register starts ringing.
Since shoeing is a now part time passion for me, I can afford to pick and choice my battles. Somehow just knowing that I don't have to shoe a rank horse to feed my family takes a lot of negative feeling out of the picture. I probably give the horse more of a chance than I did when I shoed full time.
It's my jaded opinion that most restraint techniques would be more effective when applied to negligent horse owners, the poor horse is a product of their inability to train and handle the horse. As soon as I hear "Oh, we never pick up his back feet any more, he just doesn't like it" my tools are back in the truck and I'm down the road.
I try to take one day at a time -- but sometimes several days attack me at once.
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 09 Mar 2005 05:30 #10

  • J.H. shoeing
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Hey Scott

I use the "charge them till it's fun" saying. And if they really want me to shoe a goofball I'm going to have a lot of fun. I always warn them in advance about the cost. Most of my "bad" horses seem to find newer cheaper Farriers.

Jeremy

If they are dancing around it is going to be really hard to put out top quality work. I have had to stop and explain to the Clients what I need to turn out quality work and most understand. The ones that don't seem to end up with the newer cheaper Farriers. But we all have horses in our books that are difficult and we do them because of the Client/relationship or the money the account generates. I know that I shoe a horse for a little 6 year old girl that I normally would charge double just to put up with him. But they keep sending the 8x10 photos of her going to the pay window on him and I keep shoeing him for the same rates as the other horses in their barn. Funny what hugs and wild flowers from a 6 year old will make you put up with from a aggravating pole and barrel horse. So it is not always about the money.

Jeff
Jeff Holder

Some people are like Slinky’s, pretty much useless but make you smile when you push them down the stairs.
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 09 Mar 2005 06:50 #11

  • beslagsmed
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I tell the owners I am there to trim or shoe their horse, not train it. If they want me to train their horse to stand still, then we can make an appointment. I give them the price which works out to about $120 per hour. Haven't had one sign up for training yet. I figure that is what I can make trimming so why should I accept less for training?

Mikel
Mikel Dawson, RJF

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

Caution: Watch for hoof in mouth disease!!!
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 09 Mar 2005 12:45 #12

I look at it this way there is unruely and there is unsafe. Unruely or misbehaveing, disrespectfull can be handled very simple and quick, most of the time just putting a lead on them backing up, walking forward and stopping works well and only takes a couple of minutes, if it takes longer I will add my trim charge for every 15-20 minutes it takes, shouldnt take more than 15 minutes. This helps nervous and disrespectfull horses, because they see you as a trusted leader. If the horse is unsafe, dangerous, in the fight or flight mode, I will skip doing them and tell the owner to fix it. Put your safety first, learn all you can about horsemenship and people. Most of the time horses are just nervous and need a leader. Always rule out lameness and other problems before schooling a horse to stand for you. Also remember a horse can be difficult because they do not know you yet and might be fine for Farrier work. Sometimes it takes a few apointments, the owners should be there for at least the first few apointments, if things are not improveing with each visit then something is wrong. I have to be honest and mean this constructive and hope I do not offend any horse owners, many problems are caused by horseowner spoiling there horses, handfeeding allowing the horse to push them around when there tacking them up, leading and cleaning there feet and then the horse misbhaves for the Vet and Farrier because they think they can push people around. It really get me when I see a person come into a barn with a bag of carrotts, all the horses get worked up, why can't people see that this is dangerous to others working on with horses. Why does the horse need the damn carrotts anyways, all I see is a person fullfilling a human need and being an *****. I really wish people would realise that horses do not need to be hand fed and spoiled, it is much more fun and enjoyable for people and horses when horses veiw people as a leader that they can trust and respect, that is all the reward they need a trusted leader that will protect them from danger and make sure they are fed and cared for. Plus there are other ways of rewarding, grooming is a good one, not over reacting, nagging or yelling is another good one. Oh well, got me going when I read this post.
Phil Armitage, CF
AFA member 7480

"Anyone who proposes to do good must not expect people to roll stones out of his way, but must accept his lot calmly if they even roll a few more upon it." Albert Schweitzer
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 09 Mar 2005 13:46 #13

Absolutely correct Phil, well said. I never give treats to any of my own horses. Their hay and grain is enough. What I have seen in the past which IMO is much worse then the carrots or apples is when ppl give their horse sugar cubes, or let them nibble one out of their pocket (like its a trick). Big Major mistake right there........Some horseowners are just asking for trouble because they try and treat their horse like they do their toy poodle or feline friends....I explain to them that you just can't do that. Some understand and some think I am the world's worst horseman because I dont' give my horses treats.....O' well, my horses are easy to shoe........LOL :D
Chris Clark

"No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle."
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 09 Mar 2005 19:18 #14

I've been a trainer a bit longer than I've been a farrier (for the public) so I usually don't mind dealing with a "behaviourly challenged" horse. Trimming and training are so intertwined for me, I can't even tell where one ends and the other starts.

Sometimes the horse just needs a bit of time, a little consideration and he will stand quietly. I wish I had a dime for every new client-horse I was told by the owner was going to be naughty, or needed a twitch or a foot roped or tranquilzer...whatever, who just stood like a champ. Sometimes a few bad experiences with the horse misbehaving and the owner is more nervous than the horse and of course this transmits to the horse, making a vicious cycle.

I am never in a hurry when I trim. I take my time and chat a bit with the owner. For first time horses, I will usually go over the horse with my hands for a few minutes, I like to know the entire horse, not just his feet. I check for sharp teeth, look at his eyes,feel the poll and on down both sides of the neck, go down the spine to the tail, rub the butt just over the tail. I talk about what the horse does for a living, any problems the horse may have had healthwise or performancewise previously. This takes a short time and relaxes everyone. It allows me to know the horse and the owner better. It's funny too that taking "all" this time actually saves me time in the end. Some horses misbehave because they are afraid. These horses need a little patience and "sweet talk" rather than a "talking to".

I will NEVER dicipline a horse with a tool (rasp, etc) or by hitting it with anything else. Dicipline is usually by the owner, backing the horse up rapidly or maybe a good bounce on the lead chain, depends on the "sin" the horse committed. (Taking a swipe with a hind foot will be 3-4 good hard bounces on the shank, preferrable begun while the foot is still in the air...timing is everything). We converse during the trim so we both know what is going on at any given moment. Working with a naughty horse, I am constantly telling the owner what I feel the status of the horse is, and they tell me what they think too...he's quiet, relaxed or he's about to take his foot, or he's needing a break. If the owner is ineffective with the backup, or using the shank, I will demonstrate.

Carol
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RE:Unruly Horse Fee 09 Mar 2005 21:01 #15

  • Peggy Dolan
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Carol,
Thank you so much for these comments. Just reading your ideas was calming. I'll bet you've got a lot of loyal customers who instinctively appreciate your approach.
You must be pretty tactful as well, it's one thing for me to help a horse understand what I want, trouble begins when I find the owner more difficult to instruct.
Thank you for your thoughts. Peggy
I try to take one day at a time -- but sometimes several days attack me at once.
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