Today is National Day Of The Horse and there are many Equine loving members in our community both pet parents/owners and sitters …
“*Have you wondered whether looking after horses could be part of your house-sitting journey? Perhaps you’re an experienced equestrian looking for horses to be an integral part of your travelling, or maybe you’re someone who is confident around larger animals and you’ve come across a perfect sit that happens to include horses”" Laura C., Sitter Member
Thinking of an Equine Housesit?
5 Top Tips Learnt from Experience
When my husband and I travel, equine house sits are our absolute favourite. Along the way we’ve learnt what’s important when planning to look after horses. Here are my 5 top tips to consider before you apply to an equine house sit
- Be honest about your experience in your profile
When house sitting, it’s essential that your profile accurately reflects your experience with any animal, but none more so than horses.
Hosts looking for care for their horses will specifically be looking for this information. If your profile doesn’t mention horses you could be overlooked.
On the other hand, if you indicate you are experienced with horses and this is not strictly the case you could be putting the horses (and yourself!) in danger.
- Understand the requirements of the sit before you commit
A horse house sit can require higher levels of commitment than others. Check the listing to understand what the host expects before you commit.
- How many times per day do the horses require attention? You will need to plan your days around the host’s usual routine
- Will you be required to muck out stables, paddocks or corrals? This can be a physical job which you will need to be comfortable with
- How much interaction with the horses is expected? You could be required to catch them in the field, move them from one location to another, pick out their feet, groom them, change their rugs etc. You’ll need to ensure that you are confident completing all the required tasks
If you have any queries – make sure you ask! A video call with the host can be invaluable.
- Think about worst case scenarios
Hopefully nothing will go wrong during your housesit, but it’s important to consider what you’d do if something did.
This is really where being honest with your experience is key. The requirements for a sit may only be to put out hay once a day, but would you be able to notice and care for an injury if it were to happen?
- If you’d like to ride – ask before you go!
Never make the assumption that just because you’re looking after horses, you’ll be able to ride them. If this is important to you, ask the host before you commit.
In my experience, riding horses during a housesit is rare (but wonderful when it happens!). If you do ride it is likely to be with the host before or after your stay.
Don’t be disappointed if it’s not an option – there’s so much more to a horse housesit than the riding!
- Pack the right clothes
Last (but definitely not least!), think about what you’ll need to pack. Come rain or shine you’re going to be out in the elements looking after your horsey friends. Whether its walking through muddy paddocks in the rain, mucking out corrals with the sun blazing or putting out bales of hay in the snow, you’re going to want to be comfortable.
If you and your host have agreed that riding is an option, then make sure you have all the equipment you’ll need to ride safely – don’t rely on your host to provide for you!
When I reflect on the housesits I’ve completed, the most memorable, most challenging, and most enjoyable have all been with horses. I now actively look for housesits with horses and can’t recommend it enough!
"Hi! I’m Laura, and I’ve spent the last 12 months travelling North America with my husband Joe and 2 Springer Spaniels, Albus & Lupin. We love the wilderness and so most of our house sits have been in rural locations, 5 of which have involved looking after horses. Prior to our travels we were both experienced with horses – I have owned horses for a large proportion of my life focusing on eventing and endurance riding whilst Joe enjoys playing polo. We both love to fit horses and riding into as many of our travel plans as possible!
Thank you for sharing your Top Tips Laura.
If anyone has any questions I’m sure you’ll find the answers here on the forum … and do share your experiences with horses