If you are one of those people who have fallen in love with horses then a career working with them may be for you. Horse lovers can be young or old male or female and seem to be pretty much universal, there aren’t many kids who would say no to a pony. If for you spending time with horses is your idea of heaven then you should seriously consider going into the industry you love. Especially if you are one of those people who cannot stay away from the stables even for a single day, as it is this level of dedication that is required.
If you eat, sleep and breathe horses from an early age then for you it may seem inevitable that you will have a career with them. Equestrian centers can be found worldwide and are always popular so there are many opportunities to work with horses. Careers are wide ranging from producing, selling and distributing horse products to grooms, trainers, horse whispers, riders, vets, furriers to taking part in competitive sports as a rider, such as racing, polo, jumping, dressage and eventing. No matter what section of the horse industry you go for, you will have a rewarding and enjoyable outdoor career.
Past surveys have estimated that there are 7 million horses in the US alone creating a huge demand for experienced and knowledgeable people trained to work with horses providing many opportunities for horse lovers. The American Horse Council supports an estimated 1.4 million full time jobs ranging from feed producers and distributors to the hands on work of a large animal vet. There are many different types of establishments you can work on ranches stud farms or you can travel whilst showing or competing. Vets and furriers often have to travel to many different stables to treat horses or work from horse hospitals where they can carry out operations. There are also many different aspects of horse care you can get involved in recreation, health, training, breeding, competing and producing horse related products. With such a wide variety of jobs and opportunities available you are bound to find the one for you.
So how do you get a job in the equine industry? First you need to be absolutely sure that working with horses is what you want to do. Spend as much time as you can with horses even if this involves volunteering and mucking out. This will enable you to gain experience and decide what if any areas of horse care or management you want to go into if any. You will need to be patient and learn from experienced horse handlers who are working around you. Try working in as many different areas as possible to get an idea of what kind of work suits you best.
Once you have decided on an area you will need to gain the necessary experience and qualifications before sending off your CV. For a vet this will require extensive studying and a long period at veterinary college as well as practical study following a qualified large animal vet on their rounds. Most horse related jobs involve some kind of apprenticeship were you are trained by someone who has the skills and experience. You will need to research and investigate the particular training and qualifications of your chosen career and how you will need to go about gaining any training, qualification or experience you lack.
There are several things that can affect you choices and so you need to ask yourself several questions.
Do you really want to work only with horses? What particular aspects of working with horses do you most enjoy? Are you currently in regular contact with horses? Would you prefer to work in some supporting field? There are many pros and cons to consider.
A supporting role often provides more stability and involves regular hours and higher pay, though you still get the benefits of working with horses. A more hands on career has the benefits of working with horses all day everyday and greater flexibility with hours etc though expect to work long hours. Though these jobs are less well paid, often harder to attain and less reliable.
What skills education and qualifications can you boast about? Many jobs have certain qualifications or experience as essential requirements for applicants. Without these you stand little chance of getting these jobs. Make sure you stand the best chance by studying hard to gain necessary qualifications and most importantly, especially with hands on jobs, get as much experience of working and riding horses as possible. This will ideally be several hours per day as a minimum.
You may need to volunteer and spend money in order to train and gain qualifications and experience initially but if you persevere you will attain a rewarding career as an equestrian.