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Spring Forward in the Equine Industry

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry

I appreciate this is a difficult time for the whole population and that right now, there are many worried equestrian and non-equestrians struggling and worried, but let’s take a moment out of all this Covid-19 madness to rejoice as nature marches on uninterrupted.

Spring is about to be sprung and we couldn’t be happier at the prospect of tiptoeing through the tulips – in 2020 the clocks go forward at 1.00am on Sunday 29 March – it always happens on the last Sunday of the month.

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Swallows Arrive

In amongst all the horsey loveliness of Spring, a real highlight for me is the arrival of our beloved Swallows with their “let’s get the party started” vibe. The uplift they provide as they arrive tired but jubilant never fails to lift my spirits.

Guest Blogger Kelly Wallace Horne has seen many a horse through many a Winter: Spring season transition both as a horse owner and professional Show Jumping groom. Following are just some of the seasonal considerations those of us who are still working with horses should make.

Caroline

 


Spring is in the air!

by Kelly Wallace Horne

Spring is upon us and, as we alter the clocks at the end of March and gain an hour’s daylight in the evening, we turn our attention towards the forthcoming summer season, alas which will not be a competition season for any of us this year, for at least a good few months at least, maybe longer. 🙁  However, let’s appreciate the everyday ups and downs of the spring season and have a giggle at the adversities the spring season brings with it for hard-working professional equestrians and our fellow horse lovers.

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Time to change the clocks.

 

 

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Riding in the EveningsRiding in the evening after work – but do consider the NHS and its ability to deal with emergencies right now; so stay safe!

One of the first things we notice and enjoy in the Spring is the longer daylight hours. Whether you work with horses and your evenings are a time for doing non-horsey things, or you do your own horses after work, most evenings at this time of year you hear exclamations of “have you seen the time? It’s still light!”

 

 

 

Beware of the fluctuating temperatures

Certain times of the year are a nightmare for knowing how to dress yourself, let alone your horse. It’s easy (if annoying) for us to be slipping jackets and jumpers on, off, on, off… but worrying about whether the horses are chilly or overheating is something else altogether, especially when we’ve rugged them up and left them in the field for the day. A groom staggering back across the fields under the weight of 2-3 or more 6’6″+ winter turnout rugs is not an uncommon sight at this time of year!

Where things can go awry is when grooms rug according to the season and not by the current temperature and weather conditions. For example, -3C is just as cold in any month of the year, so if you rug your horse in a duvet at -3C in December, rug your horse in a duvet at -3C in April!

Don’t be fooled by the shining sun – the wind chill factor can make standing in a field all day very unpleasant! It can, however, raise the heat within stables and barns quite quickly, despite the outside windchill. In our Basic Guide to Rugging Horses, fellow blogger Emily Taylor describes her pet-hate of grooms who would turn up on the yard wrapped up with just their eyes showing, start mucking out, get hot, then go round stripping rugs off all the horses as though the horses had been mucking out and got hot too! It’s complicated and hard work but it’s a means to an end – summer is on its way!

 

 

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - April ShowersApril Showers

Oh, such happy memories of riding the event horses out on a 1.5 hour ride in the rolling hills, setting off in gorgeous, warm spring sun in our t-shirts and strappy vest tops – only to be caught in a ferocious thunderstorm, complete with hailstones 30 minutes in! After much excitement playing buckeroo on the spirited youngsters, or on older horses, balancing on the edge of a precipice atop a headless, neckless sideways moving beast shielding its eyes and ears between its front legs, we’d all ride the next hour looking like participants in a wet t-shirt competition. Much like the temperature at this time of year, quick-change routines are a required skill in order to stay dry throughout the day.

 

 

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Funny Tan Lines

An early taste of summer

After the long winter season, the warmth of the spring sun can feel rejuvenating and it’s tempting to soak up the rays believing we a topping up our Vitamin D. However, this early in the year the sun’s rays are quite capable of burning our skin, so it’s strongly advisable to use a factor 30 or factor 50 sunscreen, even if the sun isn’t that hot. Whilst we associate the sun’s UV rays with hot summer days, we are actually absorbing UV rays even on milder, partly cloudy days. Working as a groom means long hours outside in the sun so it’s important for grooms to be mindful of this, especially come the spring. You really don’t want to end up with skin cancer later in life, and at the very least you don’t want to end up with bizarre tan lines later in the summer.

 

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Moulting HorsesThe Spring Moult!

It’s always a relief to exchange a woolly mammoth for a sleek pony, but getting from one to the other isn’t always great. We seem to do it via a process of transferring the horse’s winter coat onto ourselves before casting it off for the birds to make nests with. Walking about looking like a yeti seems to be a compulsory initiation ceremony for gaining entry to summer.

 

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Swallows in the raftersSwallows!

There can’t be many yards in the UK that don’t have this charming summer lodger in the beams and rafters of their barns and stables. OK, they tend to bomb the place with droppings (and NOTHING is sacred), but we can forgive them that when we hear their cheery twittering as they swoop across the skies above us. They certainly are a welcome sight and sound of the summer.

 

 

 Laminitis

The April Showers and warmer temperatures bring with them the risk of laminitis, especially in ponies. The early flush of spring grass is very sweet and tasty to horses and is packed full of sugars. This means that even though the paddocks may look sparse of grass, what little growth there is can pose a high risk to horses and ponies prone to laminitis.

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Laminitis

The sugar content in this very early growth is so high that it can trigger a bout of mild to moderate laminitis in horses who have never suffered before, and some owners/grooms may not even realise this is the cause of a mild unsoundness at this time of year.

Having a record of each horse’s vital signs is invaluable at times like this, as you will detect changes in a horse’s body very early on, possibly before a health issue shows visible symptoms, and you can take appropriate action soonest. Keep a close eye on the horses and be mindful that this seemingly harmless first flush of grass is actually quite potent.

 

Flies

Unfortunately, with the warmth and the sun come the flies! It’s a good idea to get into the habit of applying fly repellent as soon as you spot the blighters out and about.

 

 

Ragwort

One of the downsides of the summer is the persistent growth of ragwort in the paddocks. Traipsing around the paddocks armed with a Ragfork and poo bucket, envisaging ragwort rosettes as chocolate bars you can eat later, soon gets old so hitting the scene early can make a real difference later on. When you’re poo-picking the paddocks start keeping your eyes peeled for early sprouts of ragwort now and get rid of them as you go (but not onto the muckheap, into the incinerator), so you should find you don’t have tons of it to clear later in the year.

 

 

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Spring FeverSpring Fever

Anyone who has worked with animals knows that “spring fever” really is a thing. Suddenly, the four-footers around us develop a spring in their step (pun intended), which often escalates to a full-blown bolt around the grounds that would do the Grand National proud. The mischievous horses that are turned out together start sparring and shadowboxing, and those that aren’t doing exactly the same, just over the fence. Lunging is frequently an accurate imitation of the wall of death, and even the sluggish of horses will demonstrate their best gazelle impression in the school or on a hack. Again, do consider the NHS and its ability to deal with emergencies right now; so stay safe!

 

 

Competitions

Whilst many disciplines normally compete all year through, it is undoubtedly much nicer going off to shows in the summer (when it isn’t hammering with rain). This year, of course, is very different and the Covid-19 restrictions have certainly ‘stopped play’  as far as competitions are concerned for the foreseeable 🙁

Competition Grooms would usually be at their busiest but this time will end when it does we can dream of long, balmy days again (don’t forget your sunscreen), as well as lots of yummy junk food. Now you could get still get ahead, stock-checking the washroom and plaiting kits, getting the lorry ready and topping up the lorry’s first aid kit etc.

Meantime, even though it might be tough to do right now, don’t forget to book ahead &Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - Service your Horsebox or Trailer

Spring Forward in the Equine Industry - get your clippers servicedGet your clippers serviced

Autumn and winter clipping might be a task you’re keen to forget for a few months but, believe me, it will be upon us again before we know it! It’s a good idea to get organised and get blades sharpened and clippers serviced early on in the year, THEN you can forget about it for a few months and pick up your ship-shaped set of clippers come the autumn.

 

 

Foals! Foals! Foals!

For those of us working in the stud industry, or simply expecting the arrival of a four-legged bundle of fun at our home or livery yard, the wait is over as we head into the foaling season Covid -19 or not!

Across the country, there will still be lots of anxious waiting, long nights on foal watch and unexpected surprises as mares conveniently foal the moment you turn your back on them.

 

Spring is undoubtedly a wonderful time of year and always seems to be with us for such a short while. We really must take the time to appreciate the vibrancy of the blooming colours and the increasing vitality of the animals around us (without falling off them) and make the most of spring whilst it lasts. Why not take this time to sit in the spring sun with your boss or colleagues and look at what was difficult on the yard (in practical terms) that could be addressed long before the next winter kicks in? There are many useful ideas to draw on from all sorts of sources. Here a couple to get you started:

Top Tips for Winter Proofing Your Yard

9 Ways to Get Your Yard Winter Ready

 

 

 

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The content provided in this article is for informational purposes only. It is the responsibility of the individual to ensure that the information they are working to is correct and appropriate for their specific circumstances.

© Caroline Carter Recruitment Ltd and The Grooms List, 2019. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Caroline Carter Recruitment Ltd and www.thegroomslist.co.uk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Job Description We are looking for someone to work in our equine clinic office doing secretarial, reception and book keeping duties but also to help with in-patient care, general horse handling for veterinary procedures and some veterinary nursing assistance. So we require a versatile person with excellent communication skills to join our existing team. Minimum Requirements Good computer skills, telephone manner and ideally some bookkeeping experience. Comfortable around all types of horses and a good knowledge of the equine industry.   Accommodation details There is no accommodation offered with this position.   Benefits    
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*5 Day week *Own horse welcomed & dog considered* Training facilities on-site including xc course, derby arena, 3 outdoor schools and indoor arena. *Top class facilities which are hired or used to run competitions. (BSJA and ODEs).*Accommodation available Job Description Looking for a top-level experienced groom who can help manage a small but competitive yard. We are a family-run setup, breeding and producing competition horses.  Usual yard duties with plenty of opportunities to groom at international shows. We are mainly an eventing/dressage yard but also compete in show jumping regularly. We are looking for a groom with experience in top-level eventing/dressage yards who can help manage the day-to-day care of our horses.  We believe our horses’ care has a massive impact on their performance, which largely rests with our grooms. 5 day week. Opportunity to bring own horse with fantastic training facilities on site including xc course, derby arena, 3 outdoor schools and indoor arena. We regularly run events on-site including BSJA and ODEs so applicants may sometimes to be required to help with these. Minimum Requirements Must have previous experience at a top-level eventing/dressage yard. Must have a good work ethic and a solid base of knowledge. Accommodation details Soon to have new accommodation on site available, for now nearby accommodation available. Benefits Fantastic team that works together and is keen to learn Opportunity for own horse and use of facilities Opportunity to play massive role in producing top level competition horses
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Al Samriya Riding School (ASRS) is a privately-owned equine farm, and one of Al Faisal Holding subsidiaries. ASRS was established in 2007 as an expansion to Al Samriya Estate. Located in Al Shahania, an area 30 km from Doha, we pride ourselves for being in a unique location with access to fields, arenas and tracks where riders can enjoy the picturesque scenery of the Oryx reserve, farm and FBQ Museum set as an old Arabian Fort.   We are looking for an Equine Operation Manager to run day to day operations of the horse farm which contains around 90 stables (150 horses). Responsibilities include formulating overall strategy, managing people and establishing policies. Helping staff develop and be productive, while ensuring wellbeing of the horses and maintaining the facilities of our horse riding school. Ultimately, make Al Samriya the equestrian center to be proud of. Other responsibilities include: Lead, mentor and motivate staff Provide formal supervisions and manage staff performances Manage finances and Human resources for Samriya staff (salary/holiday planning/contracts/etc) Build effective working relationships with key stakeholders and other organisations Member of the Horse and Facility Improvement Team Adhere to all statutory legislation and Health and safety standards Risk assessments Sustains a friendly and professional environment in which riding, training, physiotherapy, education, work placements, research and evaluation activities all take place Maintain all relevant records Procedures and guidelines Minimum Requirements University degree, preferably in Equine Science, Animal Science, or Equine Business Management or any relevant field. Minimum 3 years experience in a similar role. From previous management or supervisory experience in hospitality or leisure you will have acquired outstanding business acumen, and driving the team to great results. You will lead your business to great successes. Well-versed in managing facility and premises of a horse farm.  Excellent Communication skills, and the ability to build rapport and strong relationships with people across all levels. Very good Computer Skills. Diligent, enthusiastic and passionate Salary: circa £35,000 per annum (depending on experience) Accommodation provided Pets and own horse welcomed for long term job holder Partner welcomed
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Al Samriya Riding School (ASRS) is a privately-owned equine farm, and one of Al Faisal Holding subsidiaries. ASRS was established in 2007 as an expansion to Al Samriya Estate. Located in Al Shahania, an area 30 km from Doha, we pride ourselves for being in a unique location with access to fields, arenas and tracks where riders can enjoy the picturesque scenery of the Oryx reserve, farm and FBQ Museum set as an old Arabian Fort.   We Are looking for a Stable Manager to oversee the proper care of horses and their wellbeing, supervise stable employees and must be highly skilled in all aspects of horsemanship. Main Responsibilities: Member of the Horse and Facility Improvement Team Implements the highest standard of Equine condition and care ID registrations of the horses Run the day to day stable care Feed management, Farrier Grooming/clipping/cutting maintaining of coat, manes and tale of all horses responsible for tending to equine emergencies and liaise with the Vet Managing Stable hands/Grooms/Head Groom Arena surface management, graze and turn out management Teaching all levels Assisting and liaise RS Coordinator and Head Coach Support in training of horses and Planning events Sustains a friendly and professional environment in which riding, training, physiotherapy, education, work placements, research and evaluation activities all take place Salary: circa £26,000 per annum (depending on experience) Accommodation provided Pets and own horse welcomed for long term job holder Partner welcomed
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Job Description Stable hand required for family run Horse Sanctuary in Cyprus. 15 horses in rehabilitation and recovery. Duties include feeding, mucking out, washing/grooming horses, wound care, tack room/tack maintenance, ground work, riding, hacking out. Must be prepared for sole charge, and dealing with visitors (training given).   Minimum Requirements Very good fitness level, must ride, willingness to learn, helpful attitude, love of horses, good with dogs/cats, willing to work around pigs/chickens, must be able to chat to visitors!     Accommodation details Very pleasant en suite room in employer’s large farmhouse on site. Full board. Share meal preparation and washing up.     Benefits On job training, medical insurance, shared flight cost, British family environment, full board, team atmosphere, lots of rescued animals, good climate, beautiful rural location.    
PLEASE NOTE, FOR THIS VACANCY,  WE WILL ONLY ACCEPT APPLICATIONS FROM JOB SEEKERS WITH: A CURRENT CV ATTACHED TO A CURRENT JOB SEEKER PROFILE AN HGV LICENSE (able to drive a 26t lorry)  *Salary IRO £400/£450+ top, top wage for previous competition grooming experience depending on experience *Own horse and pets welcomed *Partner welcomed This vacancy is a lovely and rare opportunity for an experienced Groom who combines the experience of working on a family yard, with performance horse know how ideally gained within a SJ/jumping environment to work as a competition Groom or would suit someone already experienced in Competition grooming. This family of young riders are very active most weekends and therefore you will need to be prepared to cover this, although some weekends off are available by prior arrangement and exception. You will need to be flexible to work 5.5 sometimes 6 days a week Must be prepared to cover weekends and stay away You will need to be flexible enough to handle an environment where things change regularly as it is a fast-paced, rapidly expanding scenario. You would need to take this in your stride and it would be ideal if you saw this as invigorating and exciting rather than a nuisance! The family have 18 quality jumping horses  (currently managed by 2 FT/ 1pt & the Yard manager/ trainer) and  on a second yard, an assortment of broodmares and young stock, (hopefully destined for a career in SJ/jumping.)  The family consists of non-riding dad who is looking forward to spending more time with his family as part of their journey, mum who is an experienced horsewoman and 3 daughters (aged 12-15 years old) who are very keen indeed. The girls all do BSJ and want to eventually do European tours & be on YR teams. They are the focus of the role and all activities that go on with both yards, will underpin these equestrian dreams. Please call Caroline & the Team on 0203 006 5730 or email info@carolinecarterrecruitment.com      
*3 bedroom accommodation available (no charge) * Salary £IRO £20,800 pa  *Partner welcome *Dog welcome Well known Racing Flat Racing/National Hunt horse owner and thoroughbred racehorse trainer requires a couple or single person (s) who are experienced and lightweight enough (max 10.5 stones) to be able to ride racehorses and to do all general stable duties to a good standard. Ideally, the applicant will be able to drive a 3.5t horsebox. Please call Caroline on 0203 006 5730 or email caroline@carolinecarterrecruitment.com  
PLEASE NOTE, FOR THIS VACANCY,  WE WILL ONLY ACCEPT APPLICATIONS FROM JOB SEEKERS WITH: A CURRENT CV ATTACHED TO A CURRENT JOB SEEKER PROFILE Job Description *Upwards of £500pw depending on experience + pool money & bonuses paid *Friendly working atmosphere *Pets welcomed *Accommodation available/partner could be accommodated National Hunt  yard looking to recruit Riders and or Rider:Grooms for upcoming season. Friendly working atmosphere and fabulous location with the best of facilities. Minimum Requirements Friendly working atmosphere and a fabulous location with the best of facilities awaits. You must be confident and experienced in handling and riding TB’s. This would suit a professional NH/Flat Racing Groom & Rider with excellent references. Please call Caroline & the Team on 0203 006 5730 or email info@carolinecarterrecruitment.com Accommodation details On site accommodation options single/shared/with partner 🙂 Caroline’s comments 🙂 This is a fabulous opportunity for competent and capable riders to get a lot of saddle time on a professional yard with quality horses and be very well remunerated and looked after as part of a professional Team.    Please call Caroline & the Team on 0203 006 5730 or email info@carolinecarterrecruitment.com
Salary 8.5 Euros/negotiable dependent on experience with no food/accommodation or utilities to pay. You will need some experience grooming competition horses One of the Most Professional SJ yards in the world – Learn your trade with the best and secure your Grooming future with a hands on job. All you need is a passport and an adventurous spirit! Enthusiasm and dedication to work along side the best horses, riders and horse people.This opportunity would be GREAT FUN and a second to none experience which would guarantee your career anywhere you chose in the future both home and abroad. A rare insight into world class horses, world class facilities and a truly remarkable experience for any groom seriously interested in getting to the top of their game. Whilst there are considerable opportunities for advancement and promotion possibilities if you wish to remain in Germany. 🙂 Caroline’s comments 🙂 This is a commercial environment where the opportunity to learn is awesome but not for anyone who gets homesick or doesn’t feel comfortable in the commercial end of the horse world. The horses you will encounter are world class and it will certainly add to the breadth and depth of anyone’s experience. Fast paced and exciting in so many ways. A real ‘one off experience’ to add to the CV!    Please call Caroline on 0203 006 5730 or email info@carolinecarterrecruitment.com
*Salary IRO 1800 euros *All accommodation and food provided *Seasonal position with far reaching CV improving benefits! This world class service station and stud is looking for experienced stud hands for the forthcoming season to be based in Muhlen, Germany. Some prior experience important as some serious unmatched warmblood breeding stock is involved in this operation names such as  Balou du Rouet, whose offspring’s prize money makes millions plus Sandro Hit plus stallions Fürstenball, Vivaldi, Bordeaux, Foundation, Vitalis, Sir Donnerhall I and Diarado were amongst the leading group of all German stallions according to the German FN’s 2016 predicted breeding value statistics. Last year stallions from Mühlen once again dominated the Oldenburg Elite Mare show and of the twelve mares presented, seven of them were daughters of this yard’s stallions, including the winner Candy OLD by Sir Donnerhall I. The list goes on and on and on! 🙂 🙂 Caroline’s comments 🙂 This is a commercial environment where the opportunity to learn is awesome but not for anyone who gets homesick or doesn’t feel comfortable in the commercial end of the horse world. The horses you will encounter are world class and it will certainly add to the breadth and depth of anyone’s experience. Fast paced and exciting in so many ways. A real ‘one off experience’ to add to the CV!    Please call Caroline on 0203 006 5730 or email info@carolinecarterrecruitment.com  
*Own horse a possibility * Very experienced Yard manager based on site *Fabulous facilities Job Description We are looking for a friendly, hard working individual to join our team at our busy yard just outside of Tonbridge in Kent. The candidate will be happy to assist in all yard duties including turning out, mucking out, catching in, etc.  An eye of detail and a tidy yard attitude is a must. You will need to be self driven, ensuring all duties are carried out meticulously.  We run a very reputable livery business and our reputation is important to us. Minimum Requirements Previous experience necessary   Accommodation details     Benefits    

© Caroline Carter Recruitment Ltd and The Grooms List, 2019. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Caroline Carter Recruitment Ltd and www.thegroomslist.co.uk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Caroline Carter Recruitment Ltd
The Stables
Fildyke Road
Meppershall
Bedfordshire
SG17 5LU

caroline@carolinecarterrecruitment.com
0203 006 5730 / 07747 686 118

Registered company number 10657796good site
Caroline Carter Recruitment Ltd is registered with the UK Information Commissioner as a data controller with registered number ZA250621

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