All posts by Christine

I'm a 1984 Australian female who is passionate about horses and education.

Stud Work, TBs

Joys of the Thoroughbred Industry.

Planning on working with horses? Want to run your own property? Experience wise, you couldn’t go past spending a season or three in the stud side of the racing industry. Pay wise – Thoroughbreds are your best bet for a half decent income when it comes to working with horses.

For the past twelve months I have been out in the ‘real world’, working – finally! Before coming to Ireland to study, I spent my days in a small town called Euroa, in Victoria, Australia that seems to house about a dozen studs – I worked at three over this duration.

As someone who wants to breed thoroughbreds for a hobby and run my own horse property, working on a stud is the best way to go about gaining experience. During the breeding season (August – December in Australia) you get practise at handling mares for service, handling stallions, horses for the farrier, treatments for horses (oral and injections), bandaging, foaling down mares, feeding horses and general stable work.

As the year comes to an end, it moves on to the yearling season where practice in preparing horses for sales, grooming, exercising, parading for clients and eventually taking the gorgeous animals through the sale ring (some, for prices in the hundreds of thousands!) is gained.

From December through to April yearlings are prepared and every eight weeks, a new group is brought in and it starts again, introducing them to being brushed, having rugs on, leading correctly.

Following this, it is time for the ‘babies’ to be weaned, and mothers are taken away and they start life without the ‘milk bar’; slowly getting used to people and being handled, having feet trimmed and sometimes, prepared for sales at the young age of five or six months.

Excluding the horse’s actual racing career, working on a stud gives you the chance to see the birth of a foal, it’s first year or so of life and upon retiring to stud, the progeny it then goes on to produce. What more could you ask for?

“Correction does much for the horse, but encouragement does more.” – My ‘home’ and work from August till the end of each year. – Another stud I worked at in Euroa.

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Volunteer With Horses

So you know the cheapest way to get extra horse experience? Can’t quite remember how I found out about it, but I’ll almost do anything to have myself working with horses. So, when I found out about Riding for the Disabled and the fact that they are always looking for volunteers, I thought – why not?

One Saturday every two weeks for about a two year period, I joined up with other volunteers at Riding for the Disabled of Australia in Moorabbin, Victoria to help out with grooming ponies, feeding, tacking up and leading young riders around an arena, over and around obstacles and on ‘trail rides’.

RDA is really a great cause and what better way to get extra hands on with horses, and be able to help out at the same time? An added bonus if you’d like, this would look excellent on the resume but just helping out was reward enough.

As someone who wants to eventually run my own agistment property and riding school, it was a great eye opener and an invaluable experience.

“In riding a horse we borrow freedom” – Helen Thompson

Why not help someone else to a chance at freedom?


Ireland and Horses

So I love horses, and I love the idea of travelling; but travelling isn’t cheap. One thing that’s so appealing about these animals though, is that you can work with them almost anywhere around the world.

Ireland has always been a dream of mine as a place to visit and has been made possible thanks to horses.

If you love working with horses and have a desire to travel, I strongly recommend you do so! The cheats way to do it without it costing too much, I believe is working holidays or attending an equine related course.

Currently, I’m studying at the Irish National Stud and am thoroughly enjoying myself, having come to another country to work with horses in an environment where I am learning daily, doing something I love and getting to meet different people from around the world and therefore – many contacts.

Check out the stud at

“The outside of a horse is good for the inside of man.” – Winston Churchill

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