As the old saying goes “No hoof, no horse” and thus the farrier was born. Dedicated to ensuring hoof health in equids across a range of disciplines, farriers are known to be hard-working, have an eye for detail, and a love of the craft. During the last decade, we have seen a rise in women entering the workforce who are not only making a mark on the profession but on the horse industry in general. There are no accurate national employment statistics showing the breakdown of male vs. female farriers working today, but we know anecdotally that there are more female farriers now than ever before. This series will highlight female farriers who exemplify the values Mustad Hoofcare Group holds most dear: passion, innovation, commitment, and collaboration.
Jess Baker, affectionately known as “Jess the Farrier”, serves clientele in both Illinois and Indiana, sometimes traveling 200 miles in a day. She is going into her 6th year of business after completing farrier school. She explains, “I thought trimming horses could be a good side gig while I did I something else in the industry…. so I signed up for a 2-week trimming course and wound up staying at the school for the full five-month course… I just fell in love with the trade.”
Jess shared that one of the accomplishments she is most proud of is that only one month after graduating from the Midwest Horseshoeing School she acquired her certification through the American Farriers Association which opened doors for her career to expand to where it is today. As a female in the industry, Jess describes her experience as “there are no disadvantages to being a woman farrier. If you go into any situation thinking that the cards are stacked against you I think you're more likely to fail.” Jess dedicates her time and energy to this profession on a daily basis, no matter the weather, the circumstances or the travel required. She candidly remarks, “Just do the damn work.”
Jess has been using Mustad products since she began her business. “All my shoes and nails are Mustad. They are just tried and true.” She uses Delta Challenger Shoes and Delta Nails daily explaining, “I'm really not a huge tool nut but I've tried to branch out a few times and I just come right back to Mustad. The Challenger shoes are so versatile I use them every day.”
If you’d like to connect with Jess Baker to discuss her business, her ambassadorship with Mustad or Mustad products she recommends, you can find her at www.jessthefarrier.com.
Written by Emily Smith.
Photography by Lauren Emily.