Unfortunately near the end of November I ended up with a laceration on my hand that made it so I couldn’t swing a hammer or use the hand to squeeze at all. Something like this really makes you stop and appreciate how much we take for granted in being able to do daily tasks. Since it was my right hand that got hurt and I am right-handed I had to relearn how to do many things with my left hand (trying to eat with a fork was surprisingly difficult). It’s not just the trying to do things one-handed but also the rescheduling that has to take place as a farrier. There were clinics I wanted to be at which I had to miss, and most appointments had to be rescheduled. With Thanksgiving this time of year the schedule already gets a little tight because of time off for the holiday. Pushing a week and a half of appointments into another already full week is definitely not easy but unfortunately had to be done. I was thankfully able to get some horses done even while injured. There were a few appointments I was able to show up to because of extremely good horses that would stand patiently while I fumbled through trimming one-handed.
I am very thankful for the help that I received throughout the time that I was injured.
There were appointments where I was able to get my marketing director Kia to come along to at least be able to squeeze the nippers as I guided where they went. Another fun aspect was that one of our local veterinarians, Dr. Mudd from Janssen’s, who is also an accomplished farrier in her own right, volunteered to come with me on her days off and shoe all of the horses for the day. It was great fun getting to discuss the various horses and cases throughout the day, not to mention, how often do we as farriers get to stand around and tell the vet how to shoe horses while they do the work? Other local farriers pitched in as well and got some horses done that I needed taken care of. Dion O’Brien CJF and Danvers Childs CJF both took care of horses for me. Thankfully most clients were quite understanding and patient as I’ve had to reschedule and move them around.
As with everything in life there are always lessons to be learned from each incident. In this case there are several takeaways that several of us can learn from. First, I probably could have been a little more careful and not gotten hurt in the first place. Second, never assume auto pay is actually turned on for a bill, always check every month. Third, it’s always a good idea for a farrier to have close contacts with other farriers that can help out when there is trouble. Fourth, this is yet another good reason or benefit to have either an apprentice or a multi-farrier practice.