Career Profile: Horse Groomer

Career Profile: Horse Groomer

by Susan Huebert
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

Each day, you comb your hair, brush your teeth, and take care of other aspects of hygiene and neatness. Except for children and the elderly in need of assistance, most people can take care of their own personal grooming, but horses need someone to do that for them. If you like horses and want to help keep them healthy and clean, the job of horse groomer might be right for you.

Horse groomers, also known as caretakers, work with all aspects of a horse’s outer appearance. They brush down the horse’s sides and back, trim the hooves, and make sure that the mane is free of tangles. For many horses, this means daily care to make sure that they are as clean as possible. If the horse appears to be sick, the groomer can also alert the owner or trainer that a veterinary appointment might be necessary.

Horses can have very different personalities. To avoid injury, groomers should know which horses are likely to be calm and which ones might bite or kick. Being able to calm down an angry or frightened horse is important in this job. Some groomers are also animal trainers, and they can often find ways to help nervous or agitated horses to calm down. Getting to know the horses is a very useful step in the process.

Being a horse groomer means working in all weather, outside or in barns that might be only partially heated in winter. People in this trade should enjoy being around horses and be able to manage their time well. Reliability and an ability to get the work done properly are also very important. Learning from others or taking courses in the care of horses can help.

Depending on the employer, horse groomers might be able to learn on the job or they may need to take courses. For people who want to study, two options are available in Canada. Equine Guelph in Ontario offers courses geared towards horse groomers in its diplomas and certificates in equine studies. In addition, the school offers short online courses through its Horse Portal. The diplomas and certificates normally take a year or two to complete, depending on the person.

Another option is Olds College in Alberta, which offers a Professional Racetrack Groom Course, a four-month course that teaches students how to take care of racetrack horses. Some people might want to complete a university degree in an area such as animal husbandry, which would allow them to do more than just grooming. Normally, these degrees take at least three or four years.

Much of the work of horse grooming happens at racetracks, which are likely to be in almost any large city in Canada. However, groomers can also find work in places like summer camps for children, cattle ranches and farms, or tour companies that specialize in outdoor adventures. Even a movie set might be a possibility. Depending on where they work, horse groomers can earn between about $33,000 and more than $37,000 per year. Work is likely to be busiest in summer, when people tend to be involved in outdoor activities, but the horses need grooming all year, and a good groomer is likely to have work even in winter.

For people who love large animals, becoming a horse groomer could be an ideal job. If you are good with your hands and enjoy the outdoors, why not consider this trade as a career?



Asha. “How to Become a Caretaker a.k.a Groom.” https://www.asha.ab.ca/how-to-become-a-groom.html.

Horse.com. “How to Become a Career Groom.” https://horse-canada.com/magazine/grooming/how-to-become-a-career-groom/.

Talent.com. “Horse Groom Average Salary in Canada.” https://ca.talent.com/salary?job=horse+groom.

University of Guelph. “Associate Diploma in Equine Care & Health.” https://www.ridgetownc.com/future/decm/.

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