Horse groom

stable hand stable lad stable lass
Care

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Jobs forecast

This information is supplied by LMI For All, where data is currently available for Scotland.

What's it like?

You would look after horses; feed them, clean their stables and make sure they stay healthy.

You’d help to keep them in good physical condition for riding, racing or show jumping.

You would:

  • Put out food and water for horses
  • Clean equipment such as saddles and bridles
  • Clean, brush and sometimes clip horses' coats
  • Muck out stables
  • Replace their bedding
  • Watch out for changes in the condition of horses and report problems
  • Treat minor wounds, change dressings and give certain medications
  • Follow instructions from vets when treatment is needed

You might also be responsible for exercising the horses each day so you will need to be a competent rider.

If you work with show jumpers or race horses, you would prepare them for events and may go with them to the show or race.

In studs and breeding yards you would work with stallions, mares and foals, and may help vets to deliver foals.

In riding schools you may greet customers, lead riders out on foot, and accompany them on horseback.

Working conditions

Hours

You would usually work 40 hours a week, including early mornings, late nights and weekends. Overtime is often available, and you may be able to do part-time work, casual work or work on a freelance basis.

Environment

You would need to be prepared to work in cold, wet and muddy conditions, and you would wear protective clothing and footwear.

UK employment status

Full-time

Part-time

Self employed

Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.

  • Positive attitude
  • Persevering
  • Reliable
  • Attention to detail
  • Cooperating
  • Social conscience
  • Empathising
  • Creative

Build your skills

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Qualifications

There are no formal qualifications required to enter this job but a good general education (SCQF level 4/5) may be required by some employers.

You may also wish to undertake a further course to increase your skills and knowledge.

You normally need up to four subjects at Standard grade or National 4 or 5 for entry to the National Certificate and one to two Highers, National Certificate in horse care or relevant experience for the HNC or HND.

You may be able to get into this job through an Equine Modern Apprenticeship scheme.

The Northern Racing College at Doncaster and the British Racing School at Newmarket offers pre-apprenticeship training which includes work experience. If you successfully complete one of these courses you can be considered for entry onto an Apprenticeship. 

Useful subjects

English

Helpful to have

A National Progression Award in Horse Care (SCQF level 4/6) and National Certificate in Horse Care (SCQF level 5) are available through SQA.

A Scottish Vocational Qualifications in Animal Care (SCQF level 5/6) could also prove useful.

Experience of working with horses is valuable and could give you an advantage and help you find work.

Being a competent horse-rider will also help.

Volunteering or looking for temporary work in a stable can be a great way of getting some experience