11 funny responses to horsey jobs

  • Working with horses can be wonderful, but while we can’t imagine a better way to spend our days, certain jobs in the equestrian industry definitely mystify our non-horsey friends.

    We’ve rounded up some of the best reactions received on hearing the answer to the innocent question: “and what do you do?”

    The Horse & Hound journalist

    The reactions to hearing that you work for H&H can range widely, from, “So have you met Hugh Grant” to “I never realised that was a real magazine!” Occasionally there’s the odd person who takes Horse & Hound to be a pub, but nearly all responses feature some sort of reference to the film Notting Hill.

    The trainer

    On mentioning you’re teaching one of your longest standing regular clients comes the innocent enquiry: “But you’ve been teaching Mrs So-and-So for years – surely she has learnt how to ride by now?”

    The equine photographer

    If there’s one question that will make every horsey photographer put their head in their hands, it’s this: “So, do the horses smile for the photographs then?”

    The groom

    This list is endless:

    “You’re working the weekend again? Can’t the horses look after themselves this once so we can go out?”

    “You’re not one of those cruel people who shaves their horses in winter are you?”

    “Surely you’re not expected to actually deal with *lowers voice in horror* horse poo?”

    The horse transporter

    “Do the horses wear seatbelts in the lorry?” Cue eye roll.

    The saddle fitter

    Even if a non-horsey person does have a grasp of what a saddle is, it’s likely they’ll be completely unaware of the complexities of the role…

    “You mean, they don’t just come in small, medium and large?”

    The dealer

    There are many things about buying and selling horses that seem to be lost on non-horsey people, especially if you buy and sell from abroad.

    “So, if you’re selling him to the Netherlands, will his new owners have to teach him to understand Dutch?”

    The equine dental technician

    Non-horsey people really do have a very warped idea of how big a horse’s mouth is, judging by this comment: “Do you ever worry that a horse might bite your head?”

    The farrier

    Every farrier out there has had it — that look of aghast when you tell a non-horsey person what exactly it is that you do.

    “I can’t believe you’d be so cruel – how would you like it if I hammered nails into the bottom of your foot?”

    The professional rider

    When they ask you how you got on at the weekend’s competition, and you tell them you were second: “Oh sorry about that. Better luck next time.”

    And then there’s the inevitable: “Wow, your life must be just like a Jilly Cooper novel – do you really have whips and spurs?”

    Not. Again.

    The semen trader/collector

    Quite possibly the best of the lot. Most mentions of this job will be met simply by horrified, confused stares, especially from men, but there’s always the odd: “Is that even legal?” uttered in a shocked undertone.

    • What’s the funniest reaction you’ve received when you’ve told someone you work with horses? Let us know at hhletters@futurenet.com, including your name, nearest town and county, for the chance to have your thoughts published in a future edition of Horse & Hound magazine

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