Love & Horses Part 5: Nerding Out Over Horse Science
“In our 7 years of marriage, I went from "I used to ride when I was little" to running a full and thriving business as a barefoot farrier. My mother was a farrier, and so is my brother, so I guess it's not that surprising that I had an interest there and pursued that path after we settled down. As a child, with my mother as a farrier, we always owned horses. I used to enjoy going to jobs with her and riding or taking walks with the horses in the pasture.
My husband Joe and I met in high school and we started dating soon after I graduated. We dated for a couple years, got married in 2011 and the day after we got married we moved to Oregon for his PHD studies., My husband actually had a horse and donkey when he was young as well but it was more of his sister's thing, and he freely admits it wasn't really his thing at all. So we got married and were in Oregon for 6 years and we didn't have any horses, but of course i was busy have children and getting used to being a mom and wife. After Joe finished his PHD we moved back to Georgia, and I started apprenticing under my mom. He was super supportive throughout that time. We have two kids, and he really helped make the time so I could go and put in the hours and get under the horses. There's just no other way to learn my trade. Every horse and hoof is different, and it just takes a lot of time and experience to learn all the ins and outs of trimming correctly. My brother was ahead of me in learning his farrier skills from my mother and he's been doing it for 6 years now. I've been in my own business now for over a year. My mother gave me one of her clients when I was ready to start out on my own, but I have found all my others myself. I currently have 76 horses that I care for and work 3 days a week.
Joe, my husband has been SUPER supportive of me starting my own business which is really fantastic considering I went from stay at home mom with a 9-month-old to working 20 hours a week! He's a microbiologist and works with fungal pathogens and really enjoys talking to me about thrush and all different types of infections, so with his input I now make up my own thrush medications. I am always online continuing to learn, there is so much more to know. There is no one trim fits all, so I am trying to continue to learn about every and all hoof issues. I'm online at least an hour a day trying to learn. Joe and I will sit in bed and he will try to guess what is wrong with a hoof, so we have a lot of fun with it.
Though my husband is uneasy around horses, he enjoys watching me work (from afar haha). He's a microbiologist, so we actually really enjoy "nerding out" talking about the science aspect of both of our jobs! He has remarked on several occasions that he is envious of my career; working with animals, being physically active, being outside, interacting with neat people, etc. I'm deeply grateful that he is intrigued and supportive of my horse related business!”
Takeaway: “I’d emphasize that it has been hugely positive. I think it’s sexy and cool because it gives you control over your time and it probably improves all your relationships because you can make yourself available if something important comes up. And you are happy doing this, and nothing makes me happier than to see you be happy. You can say that I love to tag a long when I can!” - Joe (her husband)