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Farriers prepare and treat horses' feet, and make and fit horseshoes.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £16,000 to £30,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: Variable per week

1. Entry requirements

You must be registered with Farriers’ Registration Council (FRC)

You could do this after:

2. Skills required

You’ll need:

  • good co-ordination and practical skills
  • physical strength and stamina
  • good communication skills, for working with horse owners and vets
  • the ability to keep accurate records and deal with payments and accounts

3. What you'll do

You’ll make and fit shoes for horses.

Your day-to-day duties might include:

  • discussing the horse’s shoeing requirements with the owner
  • checking the horse's leg, foot and hoof, cutting away any excess hoof growth and making sure the horse is properly balanced
  • choosing the most suitable type of shoe for the horse's size, foot condition, type of activity and working conditions
  • making horseshoes by hand or machine
  • adjusting the shape of the shoes, using a hammer and anvil
  • fitting the horseshoes

You might also work with vets and equine hospitals to provide corrective shoeing and surgical farriery.

4. Salary

Starter: £16,000

Experienced: £20,000 to £25,000

Highly Experienced: Up to £30,000

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You’ll usually be self employed. Your working hours will depend on your customers, and may include some weekends.

You may need to travel long distances to customers' premises, like farms, riding schools or stables.

You’ll need a driving licence and vehicle that’s suitable for carrying a mobile workshop, stock and tools.

The job is physical, and involves a lot of bending and lifting. You’ll work outdoors in all weather conditions.

6. Career path and progression

You may be able to move into a permanent role with large stables, horse breeders, or mounted regiments of the police or army.

You could work in equine hospitals, with vets or in the farriery suppliers business.

You could become an Approved Training Farrier (ATF) and employ and train apprentice Farriers. 

You could also move into lecturing or provide a consultancy service.

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Last updated: 11 September 2018