A Day in the Life….
The following is the very first article I wrote for this website, and I went "live" with it on August 2, 2011.
What time do you normally get up for school or work? I can guess it’s much later than when a Professional Equine Groom gets to work and starts the day… which typically goes something like this….Get to the barn before all other living creatures and the Sun are awake. Go ahead and feed hay, and then grain and supplements. This is my favorite part of the day, when the earth is quiet and you only hear the munching of hay.
Next is stall cleaning time - also a favorite of mine. It’s instant gratification to start with a messy stall and end with a tidy and smooth stall. Until you move the wheelbarrow and close the stall door, which is when they poop again.
Also included in the morning chores is cleaning water buckets, which is a great time to make sure that your horses are all drinking well. In the winter, I like to use rubber gloves to do this. Nothing like getting chapped hands from cold water.
By this time, some horses will be ready to go out for a ride or turnout. Need to groom them, tack them up, and take temps. I have always thought that being called a Groom was strange - when the reality is that grooming takes such a small amount of time compared to the rest of the day. After the rides and turn outs, horses and tack needs to be cleaned.
Go ahead and lather, rinse, repeat a few times during the day for barn chores and grooming the horses and cleaning tack. And in between all of these scheduled duties, there is plenty of “extra” work to be done - like laundry, cleaning fences, minor repairs around the farm, arena maintenance, and sometimes even riding. Take a peek at a typical job description for a Groom here - and you will understand why the days are so long and we have so many valuable skills to master.
The day ends much like it started - with the horses quietly munching their hay, and you doing another round of stall cleaning and chores. How is your day similiar? Or do you have some aspect to your grooming job that's different?
It's now one year later, and I no longer Groom for a living. I devote all of my time to this website and creating a place for Grooms (and horse lovers) to find resources about the industry, horse care, and jobs. So here is an updated version of "A Day in the Life" - what you can find me doing now!
My day starts early - but not so early now!! My barn chores are replaced by "computer chores" and the like.
First thing, I will check my emails and social media accounts for any urgent or interesting things. Must also update the social media accounts, so that all of you have the latest and greatest buzz on what's going on. Let me tell you, it's not easy to come up with interesting questions (and find the photos) to ask you guys first thing in the morning! (Which means YOU can always give me ideas here!)
Then, off to the barn to take care of the "models". This is also a time for me to get inspired, take photos, take videos, talk to fellow boarders, and brainstorm ideas. I'm not going to lie - sometimes coming up with ideas for articles (about 20 new ones a month) can be a pain in the butt. If there is no creative juice flowing - the articles are bad. And I mean BAD. So I rely on fellow boarders and you guys to ask me the questions that inspire the articles.
My afternoons, evenings, nights, late nights, early mornings, and weekends are devoted to communicating with you guys - answering questions, writing articles for this website, doing radio/phone/print interviews, brainstorming with other small businesses, and updating the website. Don't forget about all the social media stuff - keeping up with you tech savvy guys is keeping me young! Sprinkle in some of my own interviewing of other Horse Pro's to create more content, and I'm pretty much pooped at the end of the week. I'm also busy with some "top secret" projects that will be revealed in due time!! I must also mention all of the research I do answering some of your questions - I have a lot of horse experts that I can tap for great info.
My inbox is bananas, I average over 100 emails a day. (About 98 of them are relevant, the other two are from my local supermarket with this week's specials.) This does not count my personal facebook inbox or the ProEquineGrooms FB page inbox or all of the questions you guys post (keep them coming!!!).
Do I miss Grooming? YES. But I like sharing my knowledge and experiences with you guys MORE. As long as you keep supporting me and filling me with inspiration and asking questions and making suggestions - I'll keep going. One more thing - the more traffic I can get on the website, the better. Please use this resource and pass it on!! I need the numbers to grow and grow and grow...!
And even though I can work in my PJ's if I want, I still like to dress like a Pro Groom at my desk. Just as a reminder. I also have two "assistants/annoying cats" that love to join me at the desk. Their favorite thing is sit exactly where it's most inconvenient!!
ps- THANK YOU EVERYONE for making the first year so much fun. Let's ROCK!
Another update, coming into year 5 - it's the same as year 2. AWESOME!