Career in Horses - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 10-15-2013, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
Weanling
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Back in ON
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Career in Horses

I'm trying to think more seriously about my life, I've been out of high school for a couple years now. There's been a lot of bs and drama in my family the last few years so that kinda sapped my drive but things are quieter now and I'm ready to get my life started.

As long as I've had horses all I could imagine doing was making some sort of career with them. Specifically, training, buying, selling, coaching...that kind of deal. I've considered a lot of different careers but at the end of the day horses are all I want.

I've been accepted into the Western Ranch and Cowhorse program at Lakeland college Alberta and I really want to do it...I'm just trying to think realistically.

Some people tell me to do what I love, that if you have the passion and drive then the success will come and the money will follow.
I want to make a career out with horses more than anything and I know I can do it if ambition and desire and hard work is what it takes, but honestly I want to know, from people in or informed in or knowledgeable about the horse industry: how possibe is it? Can you live comfonrtably ion the income you makle? E

The world spins on money, and I know I'm not going to be rolling in it if horses are where I'm going. But the fact is no matter how much I love training, I won't be able to get anywhere if I can't make anything. Living costs too much.

I'm not entirely sure what questions I should be asking, but I'm just feeling confused and in need of some advice.

I'm trying to figure out if this is a good idea before I go and drop $30 grand into school
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Last edited by Paradise; 10-15-2013 at 09:11 PM.
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post #2 of 8 Old 10-15-2013, 09:19 PM
Weanling
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: AZ
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Here is the thing, i have been in your same shoes. The truth is, the money is not there right now in horses. People cant afford horses and are getting rid of them. The world is some what in shambles right now. I finished high school a long time ago and when I went into college I went for horses, of course. As that's what I loved and wanted to do. 3 years later when I was finishing my certificate in horse management the horse world was bad. If you still want to do something with horses I would look into. Nutrtion, or being a vet. I myself am working with a trainer and plan on taking over training driving horses when he can no longer do so.
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post #3 of 8 Old 10-15-2013, 10:16 PM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Indiana
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I'm not a trainer, and will never try and make a living off a horse. But I've always been told to find a good job so I could enjoy my horses. There's not enough money to make much of a living off of training, it can be done but every trainer I know struggles. Most will tell you it's not the best life.

If you want to make horses a career, I would go to farrier school. The farriers I know who treat it like a business do make a decent living from it. I would if I thought my back could hold up to it.
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post #4 of 8 Old 10-15-2013, 10:38 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
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The people I've known who went into horses as a career often struggle to get by. Some end up selling their own horses because they can't afford to keep their own.

I've got a mixed opinion on the whole "follow your passion and you'll make money" thing. I think it is true that if you love something you'll work harder than someone who doesn't, you'll stick at it longer and ultimately probably be better.

It's not that simple though. When you hear brilliant success stories of people they generally have generic skills that allow them to excel. Often these people are very personable and that brings them opportunities. Even then, there is lots of hard work, sometimes years working on virtually nothing.

I seriously thought about getting into horses when I was younger, even as a vet more recently, but the money was just so bad and the conditions poor that a lot of people, even if they loved horses, weren't happy. Then again, it might be something that would eat away at you forever if you didn't pursue it.

My advice to you, I think, would be to try getting into the horse world first, before spending that amount of money. Give yourself six months or a year and go get a full time job as a working student or something for a good trainer (if you can). Try it out and see what it's like, talk to people, network, make contacts, get super involved.

Also look at the course, what will it actually give you? What sort of position do you want? Make sure the choices you're making are actually leading somewhere, because these days a lot of people value experience over education. Map out what your long term plan is. If you don't know where you're going you'll never get there.

Selling/training/coaching isn't very specific. Do you just want to work as an instructor for a riding school? Do you want to open your own business? Those people who turn passion into money work towards goals with plans.

I did a qualification that I didn't fully think through, that I didn't fully plan with and in the end it hasn't done much for me.

Whatever you do, think it through, write down plans, possible choices and pathways. Be specific and research thoroughly.
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post #5 of 8 Old 10-15-2013, 11:22 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Southern Indiana
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I think it would be terribly difficult to make enough money to support yourself in the horse world until you've built up an excellent reputation.

You're college money would probably be better spent on a degree that would get you a good job and then choose what area of horse work you want to do and start part time. You might eventually get to the point that you can turn it into a full time career.
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post #6 of 8 Old 10-16-2013, 11:13 AM
Trained
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Texas
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Paradise I posted this yesterday to someone and I will repeat it for you. Dream and Dream big. If you believe you can do it then it is within your ability to succeed.
I am a Psychologist with a PHD and a retired AF Officer. I went to college got a job and became financially secure . I have owned horses my entire life since the age of 4. I now have 2 mature stallions and 29 other horses.
As the others have stated you probably wont walk out of college into a well paid position or barn full of training prospects. With careful planning and the will to make it happen you can indeed become a successful trainer or breeder.
Nothing worth achieving comes easily. You will struggle and sacrifice but stick to your plans and live below your means and we may see you on the cover of a breed magazine. I hope so. Good luck. Shalom
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post #7 of 8 Old 10-16-2013, 07:27 PM
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I would say that vet school is a great idea; however, think long and hard. There are more vet schools than ever in North America and equine vet jobs are really, really hard to find.

There is nothing wrong with getting a degree in equine sciences and opening a stable and doing some training. The thing is that to do that well, most people need a business degree. You have to be able to balance your budget and balance it well. In addition, finding equine help is hard.
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post #8 of 8 Old 10-16-2013, 07:50 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Alberta, Canada
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You're in Alberta. Get into the oilfield and that will make plenty of money to support your horse habit down the road

Manage the money carefully, build up your place slowly, pay off each piece as you need it, and you can do both.
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