Using Equus Education:
- Looking for a horse career? Consider the 160+ options at Vocation 100
- Looking to get qualified? Check out various horse course possibilities at Courses for Horses
- Job seeking? Utilise links on this page to help you.
- Looking to start your own business? Check out 52 Steps to Kick-Start Your Equine Career
- Want exposure for your horse career? Consider being profiled on Equus Education; contact Christine
- Want to increase your knowledge? Look at potential horse books to read, fiction and non-fiction
Christine Meunier, Equine Author and Educator
Wangaratta, Victoria, Australia.
The fourth book in the Phantom Stallion series by Terri Farley is titled The Renegade. Sam is surprised to find that a rodeo contractor who is out to make a name for herself is seeking stock locally. Sam’s feelings quickly turn to fear when the contractor – Karla Starr – shows interest in mustangs in particular.
A ride with Jake to allow Ace the chance to stretch his legs soon turns disastrous. Suddenly Sam has an injured friend who is very cranky about not being able to work or ride.
Rachel Slocum isn’t making things easy, either. Sam is surprised to find the beautiful neighbour needs her assistance with riding. Sam doesn’t like the idea one bit but she knows the extra cash will help their struggling ranch.
And where is the Phantom? Having not seen the stallion for some time, Sam is concerned about his whereabouts. Ignoring reason, she takes Ace out early one morning, choosing to not worry about the changeable weather. When she reaches the Phantom’s hidden place for his herd, she finds him not there. Is it a coincidence that the Phantom appears to be missing?
Battling rising flood waters, Sam needs to get home to contact Brynna Olson, who works for the BLM. She knows Brynna can help look for the stallion.
The Renegade finds Samantha Forster travelling local rodeo shows to seek out her beloved mustang. With the help of ranch hand Dallas, Sam is able to hit the road and check out the stock provided for bronc riding and wild horse race events. The Phantom doesn’t seem to be anywhere. Will Sam ever find him? And if she does, will it be too late for the wild horse and his herd?
AJ feels that her dreams have come true. In First Fence, she finally has a pony of her own. Squib, her grey Connemara cross is far from perfect – he is strong and a handful to ride. He does however love to jump. And AJ loves her gelding wholeheartedly, as much as she is struggling to control him.
The story begins with a chance meeting at a Pony Club rally. Squib is being typically hard to control and AJ suddenly finds herself able to learn alongside two very knowledgeable horse people. What’s more, they’re helping her to improve – and Squib!
AJ is relieved to have met Katy and eagerly accepts her offer of help and friendship. As she learns more about the girl’s competitive nature and her great riding abilities, AJ questions if Katy is so keen to help because she’s a friend or because she’s after AJ’s talented pony.
Just when AJ feels that she is getting a chance to ride regularly and attend competitions, she finds that she doesn’t want to be in Katy’s presence. She doesn’t feel she should be indebted to her new friend or her mother. Their offers of assistance, tack to use and a stable for Squib at no cost to her suddenly seem too good to be true.
First Fence is a great introduction to two young women from different backgrounds but with the same passion: horses. It is an easy and enjoyable read and filled with the most important thing – horses! I’ve no doubt readers will enjoy this opening book to the Pony Jumpers series.
So you may be familiar with fecal worm egg counts. These determine the worm burden of a particular horse. This in turn tells us whether it is necessary to provide them with an anthelmintic treatment. I have recently been made aware of one such treatment that identifies if horses have a worm burden – specifically tapeworms. Interestingly, this is not carried out via a faecal test. Nor is a blood test used. The Equisal Tapeworm Test makes use of saliva to determine a worm burden and if any action is necessary.
This is an interesting product that is no doubt beneficial to those concerned about their horse’s health. With this test, you can quickly determine the tapeworm burden of your horse. If it’s an issue, then you can promptly act on this by worming your horse with an anthelmintic that targets tapeworms. According to details on the Equisal website, it is important to:
Simply incorporate tapeworm testing every six months into your targeted worming programme.
Current EquiSal data shows that only 25% of horses have a tapeworm burden.
Like with many products, if you order in bulk you make a saving. For those who have large horse properties, the bulk investments would well be worth looking into.
The benefits of routine testing is that it may not be necessary to worm some horses. If the worming product is cheaper than the testing product, owners may debate it is easier to just worm horses. But a build up in resistance to some wormers by parasites indicates that it is better for horse owners to only worm horses that have a significant worm burden.
A product like Equisal for this reason can greatly benefit those who are managing horses. It is another example of a horse related product that will benefit many across the equine industry.
“To see the wind’s power, the rain’s cleansing and the sun’s radiant life, one need only to look at the horse.” – Author Unknown
Jane Myers was kind enough to answer some questions about the work that she and Stuart carry out with Equiculture. Check out their answers!
How much of your day/week is related to horses?
All of our working week is related to horses, we live and breath horses every day, although we no longer own horses as we are travelling, delivering our talks around the world.
What is it exactly that you do?
We (Equiculture) teach horse owners about sustainable horsekeeping practices (I was one of the speakers at The Sustainable Equine Conference at Nottingham Trent University recently for example). We now work between Australia and the UK, I spend about four months in Australia and Stuart six months.
We provide a one day or half day talk on the subject of sustainable, environmentally friendly horse/lan.d management. This talk gives participants up to date facts about some of the most important issues of our time. This talk encompasses the latest information about sustainability, soil loss, clean water etc. but also includes the latest information about equine obesity management (particularly in relation to pasture).
I (Jane) also coach rider biomechanics, you can find out more about that on www.horseridersmechanic.com.
In this field of work, is it possible to be a full time professional and earning a liveable income?
It is difficult – but possible. We have had to sacrifice many things, but we love the flexibility of our work. If we had family ties, such as children, it would be much more difficult.
What are the general steps taken to be employed in such a role?
I have an MSc Equine Science ( I specialised in Grazing Behaviour) and Stuart is a people person (he has a degree in Youth Work and he worked in that field for many years before working for our own business – Equiculture). Our combined equine and human qualifications and experience has allowed us to develop our unique business.
Favourite horse memory?
I have so many… riding on the beach is one.
To get our message out to more people – on a TV show would be good!
Best thing about your sport/profession?
It allows women to get out and do things that they might not otherwise.
Samantha is once again working to protect the local mustangs in the third book in the Phantom Stallion series. Dark Sunshine finds Sam unexpectedly coming across some horse rustlers. While she is out riding on her own mustang Ace, she stumbles across them and manages to stay hidden. After they have moved on, she is able to free one of the horses they are ill-treating and using as bait for other horses. Sam is keen to do something to save the others.
As Sam works to uncover the mystery of who the men are, she is surprised to find that their property River Bend Ranch is branching out. Her father Wyatt Forster is entertaining the idea of a pilot program for at risk children and rescued mustangs.
Sam can’t see how it will work on their farm – don’t they have enough to do already? Plus, she isn’t sure she likes the young girl Mikki who is to be the first at risk person to try out the program at River Bend Ranch.
Sam finds that Mikki is full of attitude, defensive and rude. The thirteen-year-old can’t see she should want to help Mikki or why she would want to share her father, Jake, Gram and the horses with her.
As Sam starts to make ground with regards to the horse rustlers, she fears she is losing a part of her father to another female. It seems too that Jake is investing his energy in Mikki. To top things off, Sam doesn’t seem to be making any progress with the buckskin mustang she has rescued. Dark Sunshine is a great follow on in this series. Sam develops further as a character and there is a little mystery thrown in to keep things entertaining.
So I’ve been reading a few of Terri Farley’s Phantom Stallion series of late. The books often reference the Bureau of Land Management or BLM. One character in the story works for the BLM. She is responsible for looking after the welfare of the local mustangs.
It’s only taken me four books in this series to realise I could put together a post relating to BLM work and horses! 😉
According to the BLM website:
The BLM protects and manages wild horses and burros under the authority of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971 to ensure that healthy herds thrive on healthy rangelands.
The Bureau of Land Management
Horses aren’t the sole focus of the Bureau of Land Management. They do however have one area that focuses on wild horses and burros. In fact, you can read about the history on their fact sheet page.
Other areas the BLM focus on include:
- land conservation
For those who are interested in helping to preserve the wild horses in the United States, then the work that the BLM carries out may be of interest. Indeed, it may be an area that you would like to pursue work wise. The BLM has 16 different offices listed in various locations on their site.
For those who are familiar with horses, they know that these animals need sufficient grazing and land to live on. If this is to happen well, then the land needs to be adequately managed. A program that works to promote the health of land and horses is one worth investing in.
“Horses change lives. They give our young people confidence and self-esteem. They provide peace and tranquility to troubled souls. They give us hope!” – Toni Robinson
I recently connected with someone on LinkedIn who works at Equinome. Curious, I checked out their website. It seems that they are a business that provides genetic testing for horse owners and breeders.
It states on their website:
“Superior performance through genomics. Plusvital Genetics, powered by Equinome is the world leader in the research and development of state-of-the-art genomic tools that assist the bloodstock industry by informing breeding, selection and training decisions.”
If as a breeder you are able to utilise a test to help you determine the best stallion to send your mare to, would you use it? Equinome are able to boast success for clients on the racetrack, at sales and also for determining matings for horses.
Tests can be carried out relating to the speed gene, elite racing performance, projected height and more. This can be done through a simple blood test. Horse owners now have an easy way to determine genes that are more inclined to be passed on. Therefore, they can better know future progeny’s capabilities.
For those who have an interest in horse genetics, you may be interested to know that even more can be determined now with tests at Equinome. Finding yourself interested in this area as a potential field of work? Then the set up at the University College Dublin may draw your interest.
Science is always expanding what it is able to do. Getting into an area that explores horse genetics and a way to better determine what is passed on to progeny could indeed be very exciting. It sounds like Equinome is one such business that provides this service to horse owners.
“A horse is the projection of peoples’ dreams about themselves – strong, powerful, beautiful – and it has the capability of giving us escape from our mundane existence.” – Pam Brown
The fifth in the Riding High series, Heads or Tails? by Bernadette Kelly follows the adventures of teenager Annie Boyd.
Although Annie is only new to the world of horse riding and owning, she is establishing herself as a capable rider and owner. Annie has secured work at a local riding school and agistment property in Ridgeview where she lives. She attends pony club and has some great friends there and at school.
Annie is devastated to find that someone has cut off the tail of a horse at work. Although she thought it was the owners, she soon finds out from her boss that it was stolen. In time this isn’t the only horse that has had their tail stolen.
As the thief continues to strike, Annie and her friends become increasingly concerned. Plus, her boss Erica loses a client and fears that will continue to happen until the thief is found and caught.
Devising a plan to catch the thief, Annie pursues what she thinks is a credible lead. When this leads to putting her own horse and herself in danger, she questions just what she’s gotten herself into. When her parents find out, they do too.
Annie is devastated to find that her actions lead to not being allowed to ride her beloved pony for a couple of weeks. Her only consolation is that the ban will be lifted before her next pony club rally.
Annie determines to stay low and out of trouble. However, when she becomes aware of suspicious activity one night, she can’t help but go and investigate. This leads to the thief being caught and the horses and ponies of Ridgeview being safe once again.
Annie is relieved for the outcome, but once again finds herself in trouble for interfering in a matter that should be left to the police. In Heads or Tails? Annie learns that some ideas are better left alone; or at least left to the professionals. This story is a quick and easy read that is sure to entertain the younger reader.
I was recently looking on a job seeking site. It was specifically focused on equine related positions. An advert on the site led me to a person who specialised in immigration work relating to horses. I hadn’t considered the possibility of the two combining to create another horse related job – horses and immigration.
It shouldn’t be surprising if you are aware of the many that travel overseas to work with horses. Particularly in the racing industry, there are many people who need to organise varying visas so that they can work in another country.
This particular business helps with just that – immigration and horses. If you’re looking to work in the racing industry, they are well versed on what visas are needed and how to achieve this.
For someone who is undertaking a new job in another country, it must be nice to know there is qualified help available in this area. As someone who has worked in the thoroughbred breeding and racing industries, I have travelled overseas to study in Ireland. From here, I have made acquaintances who have come back to Australia to work in our thoroughbred industry.
Immigration and Horses
When I was actively involved in the stud side of things, I often worked with people from other countries. They included South Africans, Irishmen and women and some from England. I know that a lot of Asian people are now making their way to Australia. Here they can work and gain horse related qualifications. Immigration appears to be a big area and perhaps increasing more as people become aware of opportunities online. They then decide to further themselves and their career in another country.
Immigration and horses could become a focal point for those who know of immigration law and want to focus on the niche area of equine employment.
“There are many wonderful places in the world, but one of my favorite places is on the back of my horse.” – Rolf Kopfle
Although the worming of horses is something that I’ve done regularly, I hadn’t considered horse anthelmintics for Equus Education. Indeed, it is something I read about regularly, too! Yet it has taken me awhile to consider it for a post here.
Anthelmintics are products that are often used by horse owners. Given regularly when needed, they can be very effective in lowering worm count levels in horses. These products are often made up of one of six main ingredients:
I have no doubt that most people who work in the field of creating these wormers, selling them and educating others about their use, have a background in science. Perhaps it’s an Equine Science Degree or an Animal Science Degree in which they’re able to focus on horse health and equine parasitology.
For those who are familiar with using horse anthelmintics, they may be aware that owners used to be encouraged to worm every 12 weeks – and perhaps to change the active ingredient once a year.
Using Horse Anthelmintics
The current practice encouraged is to only use when needed. How do we know when a horse needs to be wormed? Faecal Worm Egg Counts can be carried out to determine the worm burden within a particular animal. Anything above 200 is considered reasonable enough to treat the horse. If figures are below this, then it is advised not to worm the horse. This is to avoid using a paste that is costing money when it isn’t needed.
Knowing this information – and how to use it effectively – can come about by being educated. This is possible through people studying worms in horses and anthelmintic products. There are people within the horse industry who do exactly this. They study and they teach others about how to use worming products efficiently and effectively. If this area of horse care appeals to you, perhaps such a job role would also be appealing.