How Much Does it Cost to Shoe a Horse?
Shoeing a horse is an essential part of owning a horse. A horseshoe, usually made of metal, is designed to protect the the wall of the horse’s hooves and toes from wear and tear. Attached to the surface of the hooves, these horseshoes are nailed or glued to the hoof wall. This will prolong the amount of time that you can spend riding the horse. Depending on the purpose of your horse and the type of work it does, the shoeing will protect the muscles, tendons, and bones from injury. Improper shoeing can cause permanent damage to the horse and can even make it lame. The cost to shoe a horse is going to depend on the professional you use, the materials, and other factors.
How much is it?
- If the company is local, most will charge around $65 to as much as $130 per horse, per visit.
- If the professional charges per hoof, the price can vary from $15 to $35.
- According to HorseShoeExpress.com, most professional farriers are going to charge around $70 and $120 to shoe a horse.
- For those that do the horse shoeing on their own, the supplies should cost no more than $30. On average, the shoes can cost $7 to $15 and the nails can cost around $1. This does not include the tools that you may need such as safety gear, boots and a forge.
- The website Equine.com claims that you should budget $25 to $30 for a trim and around $80 to $100 every two months for shoeing.
What is going to be included?
- Horseshoes are available in many different materials. The most common, though, is steel or aluminum. Other materials include rubber, copper and titanium.
- The process of shoeing a horse does not cause any pain to the horse as long as it is performed correctly. After trimming the insensitive part of a hoof, this is where the nails will be driven.
- During the procedure, the farrier will remove any old shoes if present. While removing, the hoof wall will be trimmed with sharp pliers. If the hoof is not trimmed, the bones can become misaligned around the shoe, causing stress on the legs.
- After the shoes have been removed, the foot will be measured for a new set of shoes. Using a hammer and anvil, the horse shoes will be modified for the hoof. After the shoe has been modified, it will be cooled down. Upon cooling, it will be nailed on at the white line of the hoof. Once the nails have been driven in, they will be clinched and will be smoothed out to avoid sharp edges.
- If the horse shoes are being glued on, the process is a little different. The first thing that is done is the cleaning of the hooves and the horse shoes. If there is any dirt or dust, the glue will hold as well. Thick tubes of glue will be put on the horse’s hooves and the horse shoes will be attached. The excess glue will then be used to fill in any holes or cracks that may be present. The hooves will then be wrapped in plastic until the glue has had a chance to cure.
What are the extra costs?
- Most companies will charge a barn call that ranges anywhere from $10 to $40. If the travel is outside of their radius, there may be additional fuel surcharges.
- To have the shoes trimmed in the future, it can cost anywhere from $20 to $35. To have a trim and the new shoes, it can cost close to $125 to $225 for the complete job.
- If you want to do the shoeing yourself, there are other supplies that you will need in order to do so. However, these are one time charges.
Tips to know:
- Shoes are not always necessary. Depending on their working conditions, some horse breeds will not need the shoes.
- Shoeing should be done at least every six weeks.
- For racing horses, a lighter shoe such as aluminum is recommended. This allow the horse to race at the peak of his speed.
- Daily care of the horse’s hooves is key. If you maintain the horse shoes, re-shoeing will not be needed as often. The horse owner should check the hooves of each horse on a daily basis. If there is anything stuck in the horse shoe or the hooves, such as rocks or dirt, it should be removed and cleaned. The better care your take of the horse shoes, the longer they will last and the less likely your horse is to suffer an injury.
How can I save money?
- Most of the fees are tied into the travel charges. If you can have all your horses shoed at once, this can save you more than 20% to 40%.
- Like anything, be sure to get more than one quote by calling up a handful of professionals in your area. If you do not know of any that you can call, consider calling up other local horse stables for a referral.
- Since this is a job that needs to be done constantly, some farriers may hand out small discounts for those that purchase bulk jobs up front.