What do you do to support your horse habit? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 1,351
• Horses: 11
What do you do to support your horse habit?

I feel like I know so many people on this forum as it pertains to their philosophy on horses, but I thought it would be fun for us to share what we do in our non-horsey time, and how we support our oh so expensive habit.

I will start:
By day, I am an elementary school teacher. Fabulous concept to have summers off, but I spend enough money showing and attiring my horse that I work for a construction company full time in the summer, and they are very good about giving me show dates off. I find that teaching children and teaching horses have some very similar requirements :). I love teaching only second to working and playing with horses, and I eventually hope to make enough money on the horses to have the summers off.

Currently, I half lease two of my four horses, which pays for their monthly feed bill. I also use those horses for lessons year round....although we have a lot of cancellations when it gets below zero. It is 20 below right now, and somehow that takes the fun out of riding. I have two students carrying through this winter, and next summer, I plan to open up for anywhere between 4 and 8 students. I teach very beginning horsemanship and riding...Once the students become interested in a discipline, I refer them elsewhere, because I am a generalist myself (just like an elementary school teacher). It is surprising that lessons actually help pay for a lot of the incidental horse costs and my horsey shopping sprees :)

I have debated standing my stallion to a limited number of mares, but have yet to open him up because I am not sure I want to deal with all that goes with housing and breeding outside horses (for the same reason I am not keen on boarding others' horses). I have bred him to our mare, and will likely have a foal every couple of years or so. We will keep one of the foals, but may end up starting a couple and then selling them...unless we get too attached. :)

I have taken horses to "train" or work with anyway...I generally work with fairly young horses or horses with vices (unless they are really dangerous/explosive). I have worked with a few beginner horse people who have gotten in over their head. I like to have the owner there when I work with their horse, so that they can gain skills to use when the horses goes home. With training, again, I am a generalist...great at starting them/fixing problems, but do not specialize in any kind of finishing. I save finishing work for my own horses :) I enjoy training, but it turns out to be A LOT of work for the money (compared to lessons or leasing)...so I don't do a lot of outside training.

I have worked pretty hard to find horsey ways to pay for horsey costs so that I don't feel like all of my day job money goes to horses. It also ends up feeling pretty good because my horses get played with a lot year round.

I co-lead a 4H group also with my neighbor, we do group lessons every Saturday, meetings each month, and shows in the summer.

My non horse hobbies include cross country skiing and hiking. Although, I have recently been teaching my stallion to Skijor (I will get pictures one of these days) - what a trip!!!
I have 3 dogs and 2 cats in addition to my horses.

I think that is pretty much my profile :)

What are your guys' day jobs? What do you do on the side? Do you have any horse related money making activities? If you are still in school, do you work at your horses' stables to help pay some board off? What are your hobbies? Any fun facts about you :)

Don't get too personal with information (seeing how we are on the internet), but do share.
AKPaintLover is offline  
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post #2 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 1,351
• Horses: 11
Also, I know this fits better under the meet the community topic, but I would have never posted this much there when I first joined (before I got to know many on here- in a sense). Also, that topic doesn't as much focus on what we do outside of the world of horses :)
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post #3 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 09:19 AM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: SE Kansas
Posts: 10,620
• Horses: 5
Hi AK nice subject. I send my husband off to work every day to support my habit
I get a small pension that sort of helps. I used to sell my produce at the local farmers market but it really cut into my Saturdays. I started selling from the house, fresh eggs and produce but now I just take everything to the local food bank. Its so much easier and they really need it. I feel bad this time of year since my "giving" is off. Chickens arent laying and garden is sleeping so I try to take canned goods when I can. Food banks are wonderful things and I encourage everyone to support them who can.
I guess horses and gardening are my 2 hobbies. I do like to do crafts and home improvement since we live in an old farmhouse that is in a constant state of falling down around us. We also do a lot of horse camping.
I don't do any outside training except my own kids. I love working with babys but plan on having some help when it comes time to getting on their back. I have a fear of falling
I'm 50 years old, no kids 6 dogs, unknown number of barn cats, 1 house cat and I am at the moment down to 11 chickens (just lost one). Oh and 4 horses all Rocky/Kentucky girls. 2 moms and their babys.

"Until one has loved an animal, part of one's soul remains unawakened..."
- Anatole France
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post #4 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 10:11 AM
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 483
• Horses: 1
Right now I work part time at a dog boarding kennel, as a receptionist and kennel help (basically I clean up after the dogs ). I also train horses for a lady just outside of town, and get a small commission when she leases them out, or sells them.
I am looking for a full time job in Dental Reception (what I went to school for), but of course they want experience .
In my spare time I like to draw and paint, ski downhill and cross country, run, and attempt to play sports [basketball, and road hockey] with my housemates (3 boys - im crazy, I know).
I have 2 dogs that live with my parents a husky/lab[Sara] and a pug[Abbey], and I am in the process of adopting a cat from work[Famish].
Stepher is offline  
post #5 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 11:13 AM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Stiles Jct, WI
Posts: 452
• Horses: 0
My husband and I both work 40 hours a week at our office jobs. We commute 30 miles each way but it is so worth it to live out in the country. We are DINKS - double income no kids. We don't have anyone to spend money on but ourselves & the horses!! Kinda nice that way.

Our neighbor has nearly 70 horses - both his own and boarders. I currently have one of his at my place so I can train him. I do it for nothing. I thought the horse was cute and had a good attitude so I offered to work with him. :) So many of my neighbor's other horses have training issues and I would love to help "fix" them all, but I'll settle with helping one at a time. We just moved here in March 2007 so I'll have the rest of my life to help my neighbor's horses.

People are starting to ask me to work with their horses. I'm not a professional trainer, but I've had a lot of success working with my own horses and people are starting to notice, I guess! The first project I took on this summer was my cousin's horse. For whatever reason she was afraid of him. This is supposed to be a horse for her 12 year old daughter, and I was supposed to help get him to be a kids horse. I'm still not sure why my cousin was afraid of him because he was easy to work with, if not a goofy character at times! Now my cousin's daughter and the horse are best buds. :) That good news was spread by word of mouth by my cousin to another acquaintance who asked me to work with her horse next spring. I guess that's a good thing!

I am also a 4H leader for the Horse Project in my county. This is a big challenge for me. I love helping the kids, but sometimes the adults make it difficult for the kids to improve their skills. And these kids desperately need the help....I was appalled at some of the things I saw at our county fair this summer. Yikes! But since I like to keep things positive...there is only one way to go but up!


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Perfect Jin N Scotch - 2004 APHA Palomino Overo Gelding - Western Pleasure and Showmanship

Hanks Rainy Sky - 1998 Black and White Tobiano Paint Gelding - relaxing rides and blazing trails
GottaRide is offline  
post #6 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 1,351
• Horses: 11
Gotta Ride, I've never heard that term before...I guess my husband and I are DINKS also. He spends just as much on his snowmachines (snowmobiles) as I spend on horses. :) Our 4H group is small, and half of the kids belong to my co-leader, while the other half have non horsey parents, so it seems okay...but I guess we will see come show time!

Vidaloco, I have always wanted to garden, but haven't gotten to it yet....oh well, maybe in the next few years I can get a bed going :) That is awesome that you give to the food bank. You know, I have always been interested in doing some sort of program where we took 1 or 2 troubled teens to work around the property and help with horses and such in the summers, while getting to ride and learn about that (like you see on movies), but my husband, who is a corrections officer, does not like the idea...oh well, it probably would not be picture perfect ending like in the movies anyway (where the teen learns some valuable life lesson that turns them around). :)

Stepher, I always thought it would be fun to work at a dog kennel or vet office, but never got a chance...oh well, I suppose I have plenty of my own to clean up after. :)
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post #7 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 02:03 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Sultan, WA
Posts: 471
• Horses: 0
To support my horse habit (and tack buying habit), I work retail. I know, not so glamorous! I live in a somewhat small town near the Canadian boarder, so the biggest industry around here is selling stuff to Canadians! Especially with the exchange rate being at or near par lately. Someday I'll be moving elsewhere and hopefully I can get a job to put my Business Degree to use!

In addition, I also have fun buying & selling tack on eBay. It started off because I wanted to find myself a new, "used" saddle. The first couple that I bought didn't fit me, so I ended up re-selling them on eBay. I cleaned them up really well and took a lot of photos and actually made a small profit! I don't earn much money from this hobby, but it's fun and keeps my desire to buy stuff at bay.

I also snowboard although I haven't been up once this season (new horse=less time/money). And I have two indoor cats who love to have their nails trimmed.
Equina is offline  
post #8 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 05:23 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Hatton Vale, QLD, Australia
Posts: 5,227
• Horses: 7
work work work lol my husband works around 44 hours a week for a company that manufactures metal stuff :P they make the huge sheds for airline hangers, indoor arenas etc etc plus carports and garages as well. he doesnt mind it apart from the getting up at 4.30am thing :)

i work part time (30 hours a week) at a marine aquarium which pays very well so i dont have to work as many hours leaving me more time for the horseys :)

i also do a couple of private lessons per week to help bridge the gap :)

"I whisper but my horse doesnt listen...So I yell!!...He still doesnt listen"

jazzyrider is offline  
post #9 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 05:44 PM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Delregans Way Performance horses QLD AUS
Posts: 773
• Horses: 0

I am a single mum from QLD Australia. We live about 1h from the coast line (beach). My two daughters work, and i work at a Stockfeed place, where we also sell dog, cat etc supplys. We only have three horses now, and we spend appox $200 AUS on feed for them (thats not including hay) and week. Worming and shoeing are extra expenses. I am a instructor at the local Pony Club, and my eldest daughter is doing a course to, but she has to wait till August 08 (when she turns 17). I get a single parent payment every fortnight. So when my eldest turns 17, and gets the piece of paper that says she is a instructor, she can give out acredited lessons. We also sell manure, and we try to recycle anything recyclable. My eldest also rides other horses for people to make a profit to. When the show season starts again, my girls compete in the hacking, led in and the senior and six bar showjump. We often make a small profit to fund us traveling and feeding the horses. Some weeks may be tough, but i wldnt have it anyother way. Horses for life

Delregans Way Performance Horses
Bundaberg, QLD
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post #10 of 64 Old 12-19-2007, 06:27 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 819
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*chuckles* My parents support my habit! lol
horse_luver4e is offline  

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