On all these threads where people want to breed for the experience I see people telling them to go work for a breeder to get the experience. Since many of these people tend to be younger I was wondering if anyone actually thiknks they have a chance of being hired on a breeding farm. I'm asking because in reading all these threads (and trying to figure out what to do with my life) I have been interested in learning about breed and maybe getting some experience with it. So basically my question is would you hire someone with no breeding experience so that they could learn?
Well it depends on what you mean hire?? Would I take on a person who has no experience at all with horses?? NO. I would and have taken on people who are very experienced with horses but not breeding. Yes. For a simple reason. TO work at a breeding facility/stallion station you do not have to know about breeding to begin with but you MUST know about horses. For one simple reason. First. I am not going to let you collect or AI stallions and mares. You would start out holding the mares or there type of work. You would not be left alone with mares getting ready to foal but you might get barn duty or the 2am and 4am check ins with orders to call if the mare is down if you have been around when other mares have foaled out and have an idea of what to look for.
People who breed b/c they want the experience are not breeding to learn about breeding and foaling out mares and such. They do it b/c the foal is cute and no other reason. They do not think out the mating outside the fact that the 2 horses have the correct equipment. There is so much that goes into breeding out side the actual dead.
I didn't start this thread to go into the reasons people breed. There are quiet enough of those. I was just using the example that I see in some threads. When people are asked why they want to bred there horses, some of them have said that they would like to have the experience of having done it. To which people reply "go work at a breeding facility". Whether or not this is really the reason they want to breed, I don't know/care. That is not the point of this thread. (Sorry if that sounded mean but I just want to get that point across because I don't want this thread going in that direction).
So I guess I should be more specific. I would like to possibly work (read: possibly help out at for no pay in exchange for the learning experience) at a breeding facility. Would you take someone like that on? What kind of qualifications/expereince would you want that person to have?
I think you would have a good chance of gaining experience, especially at a Thoroughbred Breeding Farm. Usually they have so much going on with the breeding, foaling, breaking, etc. I am sure they would love extra hands. And if you are willing to be a "working student" and not get paid, I bet they would love that even more!
If you wanted to learn the ropes I would go to a breeding facility and ask if you could learn in exchange for barn help. I will take a younger person on every once in a while if they meet the following criteria;
A) they have at least a solid foundation of general horse knowledge.
B) they are willing to actually WORK. This one is the biggest issue. I have found so many young people who want to just kinda hang out and do as much as they feel they need to.
C) they LISTEN and respect the rules.
D) they must have a genuine desire to learn.
E) they must respect and understand that the farm is a workplace, not a play place. These horses put food on or tables and pay our mortgages.
I don't want that to come by as harsh, but it's the way I see it. I have taken on quite a few young people (one as young as 12!) and if they show dedication, drive and ambition, I will bend over backwards to teach them all they want to know. Most of them even get paid a little under the table for their efforts. Most horse people I know are the same way. We all have to learn somehow - so if you want to go out there and gain some knowledge I say go for it. Just be prepared to pay with sweat equity!
I don't think you are being harsh. Those are all very reasonable expectations. If I do find a place to take me on I will definitely work hard and do what is expected of me. I'm just not sure how many people will be willing to take someone who doesn't know anything about breeding. Also, how would I go about finding a place?