Jobs working with horses/other animals - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 8 Old 12-21-2013, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Athens, GA
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Jobs working with horses/other animals

Hello, so I'm currently in undergraduate school, majoring in Animal Science, hoping to to to veterinary school. All my life, I have dreamed of becoming a vet. Unlike several other people, I know what I'm getting into with a career as a vet as I have worked at veterinary offices, assisted with the sad, gory and bloody cases. The problem I am discovering however, is how ridiculously hard the course load is for one who wants to to go to veterinary school. And the other problem, is that my horse is staying at my aunt's which is 6 hours away from the school. The horse is 3 years old, and ready to be trained to ride and drive which is my task. However, with my demanding course work and classes over the summers, I hardly EVER get to see her which is tearing me apart. So what I would like to know, is if anyone knows of any other careers working with animals (preferably horses) that is a little less demanding through out college so that I will still have time to work with my horse. The other thing also is that I'd like to have a monetarily stable job. Because if I knew I could make money training horses, I would. But it's not a stable job and with this economy, is very rocky.
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post #2 of 8 Old 12-21-2013, 05:18 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: An English Girl living in beautiful Alberta, Canada
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If you have the capabilities required to qualify in veterinary science, then stick at it. Horses come and go, but this is the best, or THE ONLY opportunity you have to qualify for your chosen career

You must learn to prioritise life and career over your horse. If you cannot do this, or will not do this, then you will have to accept that by prioritising your horse over your long term career options then you may never be earning enough to keep yourself 'in the manner to which you would like to become accustomed'.

Sell the horse, or if you can, find someone else who may be interested in a long term loan.

I am sorry that that was not what you wanted to hear, but if I were to offer you any other plan I would be doing you a disservice.

Get up, get going, seize the day. Enjoy the sunshine, the rain, cloudy days, snowstorms, and thunder. Getting on your horse is always worth the effort.
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post #3 of 8 Old 12-22-2013, 10:00 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Athens, GA
Posts: 13
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Thank you very much for your input! Hearing more people's opinions is helping me to make my decision. I was hoping to be able to find some kind of job that would allow me to make money but still have time to work with my horse, but more and more people are telling me that it's not probable. Thank you!
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post #4 of 8 Old 12-22-2013, 10:35 AM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 3,493
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I have a friend who does Equine Assisted Psychotherapy. It requires a Masters Degree in Counseling followed by LPC licensure. She charges $60 per hour. The median annual salary for a counselor in Oklahoma is approx $50,000. There are ALWAYS counseling jobs open, but not all of them let you practice the Equine part, unless of course you open your own practice and then you can do whatever you want.

Obtaining the necessary qualifications is not as difficult/hard as vet school. She also has to see clients without using the horse though, so if you can't bear listening to people's problems all day long - this might not be the one for you. If you are interested, check out EAGALA Primary site | The Community Network for People Interested in Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Learning.
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post #5 of 8 Old 12-22-2013, 11:07 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2011
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Is boarding your horse closer simply not possible?
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post #6 of 8 Old 12-24-2013, 02:11 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: New England
Posts: 9,436
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My horses are at my parents. I live an hour away. Not too bad but don't see them often. It drives me nuts but I don't have to pay board and I know they are taken care of. Yes I could move back in with my parents to see the horses but it would mean giving up my current jobs, my apartment, and my relationship. In having my own life I need to accept that for the time being the horses are not the priority. If I make them my priority (in my situation) I would not have a life. There is very little for jobs/careers, housing, shopping, "life aside from the day to day" etc where my parents live.

Especially for you in college. The horse will not be around when you are desperately attempting to retire. You have a very rewarding challenging job that you have the drive for. Don't let other things distract you. The horse can be started later if need be. I definitely prioritize the current things in my life over my future (not a good habit, drives my mother nuts :)), but in my situation having horses wouldn't even work for the current things in my life. I couldn't have a "life".

Honestly (speaking in general, not to you) I don't understand why young people, no matter how experienced, get a horse, particularly a young horse, right before they start school. Especially if they want to focus on that horse. I think it's hard to imagine how crazy life can get once you're out of high school and on your own.

The horse will be fine being started later, or depending on your attachment, with another owner. You are not doing her a disservice by not focusing on you atm, but you would be doing yourself a disservice by giving up your dreams to focus on something fleeting and ultimately unimportant.

I would see if you could bring your horse closer, try to fit her in to your schedule. Maybe bring her to a barn where you could work with her and some of their horses for a little cash. Talk to the owners and let them know that you are interested but are a student. You might find a place that is willing to work with you. School comes first at this point in time. Just like my job/relationship/current life come first for me.

For the record I am 24 and have not (yet?) gone to college. Just didn't work out that way. I am lousy about planning for the future, and like I said, get stuck in the present. I love all my animals and it's very hard for me rarely seeing them. I make it work because that is what I need to do.

Best of luck. :)
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post #7 of 8 Old 12-30-2013, 07:50 PM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Athens, GA
Posts: 13
• Horses: 0
Thank you all so much for all the responses! As for boarding the horse closer, it's something I will have to look into more, it's just not the easiest situation for me.
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-08-2014, 04:21 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 24
• Horses: 2
I am about to be a senior undergrad majoring in Animal Dairy Science with a concentration in Veterinary Science. I have two horses and let me tell you, taking about 16 hours every semester while having a job AND participating in a sorority (because having many extracurriculars on your resume is helpful), it is not easy. This major is tough and if you want to do it, you really have to have the dedication.

Overall, I am in your same boat. It is hard to dedicate the time to my horses that they deserve, but luckily I moved them with me to my college town and the barn is only about ten minutes away. I found somewhere fairly cheap with lots of land and lots of people. When I cannot make it out there, the barn owner will gladly take care of my horses (bring them in in the cold, feed them, etc.) when I have other things to take care of. She does charge for that though, but it's worth it. I've had my mare ten years and I do not have the heart to sell her, I mean she just wouldn't click with anyone else. So whenever I have any open time I am at the barn riding them both. I may not be giving them all the work they need, which is why they are both a bit overweight, but they are both still very happy and healthy.

Overall, if this is the career you would like to pursue and you would prefer not to sell your horses, make sure you learn to really schedule your time. I have it planned out when I have class and work and sorority events. I visit the barn every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday-Sunday. If I can't go, I try to on Wednesday to make up for it. I know friends that go before work or school around 4/5 am. It's all about managing your time and having the dedication.

Good luck and I hope it all works out.
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