Have you ever dreamed of spending all day riding horses? There are a few jobs out there that might suit you. Whatever career on horse back you pursue, be prepared to work long hard hours, and some aspects of these are decidedly unglamorous. But, if youíre prepared to spend long hours in the saddle, work from the bottom up, and be persistent, you might enjoy one of these jobs.
Search and Rescue and Mounted Patrols
Search and rescue and mounted patrols do work somewhat like mounted police units, but often work in wilderness areas. In the countryside youíll need to know how to find your way around without roads to follow, survival skills, and of course all the skills and knowledge required to rescue animals and people. This isnít always a paid position as some are volunteer positions.
Catch riders ride other peopleís horses are horse shows. They may ride several horses in the course of a show. Often catch riders are also trainers, coaches or owners showing their own horses. So for some, this isnít a job description but one of the many ways they keep an income coming in.
If you have the stature and the riding skills, you could be a jockey. Jockeyís ride many horses in all types of races through the course of their working hours. Many started as exercise riders and worked their way up from smaller tracks. This is hard and dangerous work.
Exercise riders ride horses at the track too. If you donít meet the height and weight requirement of a jockey you could still be an exercise rider. Youíll be riding just started and more experienced race horses and the job can be as demanding and dangerous as a that of a jockey. Some thoroughbred trainers ride the horses sent to them, and that means they are responsible for every aspect of its care and have the skills and knowledge to produce winners for the owners who entrust them with their horses. Exercise riders may ride at a track or at a private stable.
If youíve ever wanted to run away with the circus, the life of an equestrian performer may be for you. Shows like Cavalia, Cirque de Soleil, and Medieval Knights as well as other circus and shows need performers. Youíll need riding skills, and may need gymnastic and trick riding skills as well. Trick riders and drill riders may perform at smaller venues and fairs. Many of these jobs require lots of travel.
Guides on horseback need to know the area they are working in well. They may need to know how to care for horses, donkeys or mules out in wilderness areas, and how to pack a pack saddle. First aid, wilderness knowledge and good riding skills are just a few of the skills a guide will need. Hunting guides will need a knowledge of the animal they are stalking as well as all the other skills needed to pack out a kill safely. Both tourist guides and hunting guides will need good people skills and be able to work long hours, most of them in the saddle.
There arenít as many ranch workers as there used to be, and often they use all-terrain and utility vehicles to do many of the jobs that used to be done from horseback. Still, horses are used for some jobs. Youíll probably need some livestock knowledge and a college diploma or a degree in agriculture will probably help you land a job. Youíll need to know how to ride and may need the same skills cowboys used, like roping, cutting and driving. Or, your job could also include guiding guests around a working ranch. And just like the cowhands of yore, youíll need to be hardy enough to withstand long hours in all weather and conditions.
There are still mounted police units although many have been disbanded or downsized. Yet, larger cities like Toronto, London and New York have active units. The Royal Canadian Mounted police has a mounted unit, but this is ceremonial and only for performances. There are other military and ceremonial units as well. You will of course, need to become a police officer and that usually requires a university degree and training in police services. While it might help to know how to ride, it might not be mandatory.
Horse trainers spend a lot of time in the saddle. A solid record of success in a specific sport or discipline will be your calling card to attract clients. A horse trainer needs good people and marketing skills. Coaching may be necessary to help clients ride their horses successfully. A horse trainer may have to turn their hand to many jobs such as teaching, selling and running a boarding stable to make a good income.
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