Couple Farrier Team Retiring From Horse Foot Care Service Profession

After four decades serving foot care needs for thousands of horses and their owners, The Horseshoers are retiring.

Horse owners from Topeka to Kansas City and beyond in every direction thereof are concerned. They’re without services they and their beloved equine partners have become most appreciatively dependent.

However, Jim Kanthak and Lolo Thimell, The Horseshoers, of Olathe have sold their farm and are “moving on to new adventures.” Col. Dave Webb, Webb & Associates Auctioneers & Appraisals, who’s handling their personal property auction, concisely explained the couple’s retirement.

“We can stand up and are in good health, so we just decided to do more, something different,” Jim verified.

“It’s been a great life getting to know so many people and helping care for their horses,” Lolo added.

“They’re all family and friends,” she insisted.

From a most meager and quite unusual start, Jim and Lolo have developed vast, diverse clientele. “On a regular schedule, we handle the foot care for 400 to 450 horses on a five week cycle,” Jim said.

Lolo Thimell works on a 19-hand Warmblood Grand Prix dressage horse at William Woods University.

That’s complete farrier services from routine trimming to shoeing and resets on a calendar plan.

“We have worked with a large number of hunters, jumpers, English and dressage horses, but do farrier work for all horses,” Lolo stated.

Jim and Lolo are equal in farrier abilities. “When we go to the big barns, we’ll set up two cross ties and work on two horses at the same time,” Jim pointed out.

Williams Woods University, Fulton, Missouri, has been a client more than 30 years doing hoof care for 120 horses there. “Horses are donated to the college, so they get all kinds, and we take care of the horses’ feet,” Jim said.

From high valued show horses to a child’s backyard pet all are The Horseshoers clients. “Whether it’s a $300,000 horse or a $300 pony, we provide the best feet care we can for every one,” Lolo assured.

Jim was born in South Dakota, but growing up lived in a number of states from Arizona to California and back. “I graduated from high school in Minnesota and then attended the University of Minnesota,” Jim reflected. “I applied and was accepted for a nine-month intern study abroad to London.”

As fate would have it, Lolo, a native of Sweden, was in London, at the same time. “We met in the neighborhood, talked, became acquainted and friends,” she remembered.

When Jim returned to the states, the couple did “transatlantic dating.” Also living in several locations while growing up, Lolo then visited the United States.

“We decided to get married,” Jim said. “We met in London, so we got married in London.”

Lolo grew up around horses. “I started riding when I was six -years-old, competed in hunter, jump, dressage competitions,” she said.

Jim had little experience with horses during youth days “riding horses of family members” only a few times.

On one of those transatlantic trips, Lolo met a farrier at the Chicago airport. After a long conversation and the flight back to London, Lolo called Jim and asked what he would think of becoming a farrier? “He was all in,” she verified.

 “We enrolled at a farrier’s school in Michigan, and that was our honeymoon,” Lolo smiled.

After living in several locales, the couple arrived in Kansas. “There seemed to be a transition in farriers then which opened up some opportunities for us,” Lolo admitted.

Jim Kanthak works on a horseshoe at the hot forge.

 “Then we had an opportunity to buy a beautiful 20-acre farm, west of Olathe. Later, another 20 acres became available from a close family friend,” Jim said.

Their farrier business was headquartered out of the 40-acre farm, which has now been sold.

“We also raised Warmbloods. Lolo trained and showed. The horses have won a lot over the years,” Jim credited.

 Jim and Lolo consider their horses, client horses and their owners as family. “That’s the worst part of retiring from the farrier business. We’ll miss all of the people and their horses,” the couple agreed.

The Horseshoers have sold their own horses except for one favorite they put permanently into talented hands of a friend.

Days of working on the feet of 10 to 15 horses every day six days a week have come to an end for The Horseshoers.

Their online personal property auction can be browsed, bid on and purchased at www.dlwebb.com.

“This is a lifetime accumulation of some very nice things. But, it’s not the things that define a person. Yet, we hope they will be enjoyed by other people,” Lolo said.

 “We don’t know exactly where we’ll be going, or doing, but one thing’s certain, it will be an interesting adventure.

“It’s scary but exciting at the same time. We both grew up in nomadic lifestyles so we’re looking forward to whatever comes while we’re healthy to enjoy it,” The Horseshoers summarized.