Horse Management II

Course CodeBAG204
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment



This is a good foundation course for anyone who aspires to work with horses; either in their own business or elsewhere; on a farm, stud, riding school or in an equine supplies business.

Lesson Structure

There are 7 lessons in this course:

  1. Feeds
    • roughage
    • concentrates
    • roots
    • green feeds and succulents
    • tempters and tonics
    • salts
    • feeding for special purposes.
  2. Stabling
    • three ways to keep horses
    • combined systems
    • stalls, stables/looseboxes
    • barns
    • stable layout
    • feed rooms
    • tack rooms
    • the medicine chest
    • stable routine
    • stable tricks and vices.
  3. Bedding and Mucking Out
    • reasons for bedding
    • bedding qualities
    • bedding types
    • choosing a system
    • tools needed for mucking out
    • mucking out
    • bedding down
    • managing the bed
    • conserving bedding
    • comparing bedding
    • the muck heap.
  4. The Foot and Shoeing
    • foot structure
    • trimming
    • advantages and disadvantages of shoeing
    • signs that shoeing is required
    • the farrier's tools
    • how the horse is shod
    • what to look for in a newly shod hoof
    • basic shoes
    • surgical shoeing
    • studs.
  5. Exercise and Conditioning
    • the difference between exercise and conditioning
    • soft and hard condition
    • exercising a horse
    • the fittening schedule
    • principles of fittening
    • maintaining fitness.
  6. Tack and Tack Fitting
    • principles of bitting
    • the mouth
    • types of bits
    • where the bit acts
    • fitting the saddle
    • causes of sore backs
    • care of the back when unsaddling
    • saddle types
    • linings
    • girths
    • saddle cloths and numnahs
    • tack cleaning.
  7. Horse Facility Design
    • farm layout


  • Analyse the feeding requirements and feeding techniques available for horse husbandry.
  • Develop a stable management program for horses.
  • Explain the management procedures necessary to fulfil the bedding requirements of horses.
  • Explain the management and care of horse's feet.
  • Implement management procedures for the conditioning of horses.
  • Describe the procedures used for managing the tack requirements of horses.
  • Explain the management, including design and applications, of facilities used in the horse industry.

What You Will Do

  • Evaluate different types of horse feeds.
  • Explain the use of food supplements/additives including:
    • tonics
    • tempters
    • salts.
  • Describe the feeding programs of horses, for different purposes, including:
    • horses living outside
    • horses with different workloads
    • ponies
    • mares in foal
    • old horses
    • sick horses.
  • Compare the effect of different diets on the same breed of horse, studied over a two month period.
  • Compare the different ways to keep horses, including:
    • barns
    • stalls
    • stables/loose boxes
    • combined systems.
  • Explain the purpose of the different parts of a specified stable complex.
  • Describe three routine stable tasks, including mucking out.
  • Develop a checklist for assessing the design of a stable.
  • Evaluate a specific stable against the assessment checklist you developed.
  • Plan a stable routine for a specified horse, in a specified stable.
  • Explain why bedding is necessary for domesticated horses.
  • Compare alternative bedding systems, including different drainage and absorbent systems.
  • Describe the bedding chores carried out in a specified horse care situation.
    • Recommend an appropriate bedding system for two different specified situations.
  • Collect four examples of bedding material suitable for use by a racing horse in a stable.
  • Describe the structure of a healthy horses foot, as observed by you.
  • Describe three potential problems with the horses foot.
  • Compare the advantages and disadvantages of shoeing horses.
  • Select appropriate horse shoes for six different specified situations, from a series of labelled drawings or photographs of different types of shoes.
  • Describe the process of shoeing a horse, including:
    • removing an old shoe
    • preparing the hoof
    • fitting the new shoe
    • nailing on
    • finishing off.
  • Distinguish between soft and hard condition of a horse.
  • Explain the principles of fittening for a horse coming off grass and being prepared for racing.
  • Develop exercise routines for horses in three different specified situations, including:
    • racing stables
    • a child's pony
    • mare with foal.
  • Implement a fittening schedule for a specified type of horse over a period of at least two months.
  • Analyse the results of a fittening schedule applied to a specific horse.
  • List the different items of tack equipment, that would be required by two different specified horse enterprises.
  • Label the features of three different items of tack on unlabelled diagrams.
  • Describe the use of two different specified items of tack.
  • Develop procedures for the management of tack in a specified horse enterprise, including:
    • storage
    • use
    • repair/replacement
    • cleaning.
  • Compare the different types of fencing used for horses, including:
    • barbed wire
    • timber post and rail
    • electric.
  • Determine the facilities required for different types of horse enterprises, including:
    • riding schools
    • stud farms
    • racing stables.
  • Describe the facilities for showing horses at two specific locations, including:
    • an agricultural showground
    • a sales facility.
  • Evaluate the design of a horse farm visited by you, for a specified application.
  • Prepare a design, including one or more sketch plans, of a stable for a specified application.


The construction and design of stables and a stable yard is very important. If it is not possible to design and build a stable yard from scratch then existing buildings may have to be adapted. Primarily, in both cases, the horse should be safe and secure at all times.

The design of a stable can vary widely based on climate, available building materials and position of existing buildings etc. A wide range of building materials can be used in their construction, including bricks or blocks, stone, wood or metal. 
Stable yards can range widely in size, from a small building to house only one or two animals, to large equestrian facilities, which can house hundreds of animals.
The minimum size for a stable is:
  • For Ponies an horse less than 16h - minimum size: 3.6 sq m 
  • For Horses 16h or more - minimum size: 4 sq m
Stabling facilities can be classified into two general types:
  • American Barn type facilities: internally partitioned stables within a large barn
  • Traditional, free standing individual boxes, which look out onto an open courtyard or similar area 

Traditional Stabling
More traditional stabling consists of a single stable or a row of single stables grouped together, each with their own individual doors that open out directly onto a courtyard. Each stable should have its own window and sufficient head room for adequate ventilation. They often also have a roof overhang over the stable door to help protect the horse when standing with its head out over the bottom door. Each stable has an individual entrance and the door is commonly split into top and bottom parts, allowing the top part to be hooked back for the majority of time that the horse is in there.
  • Risk of cross infection if disease is present is greatly reduced
  • Each stable has its own individual access
  • If a horse needs to be on shavings or rubber matting due to a dust allergy, it can be easily achieved within an individual box, and not adversely affected by its neighbours
  • Extra stables can be easily converted into tack, feed and equipment rooms.
  • Some horses prefer to be able to see other horses when confined inside the stable. The addition of side window panels or mirrors can prevent the horse from feeling isolated, stressed and bored
American Barn Stabling
American Barns are designed to keep everything under one roof. They are generally designed with a row of stables down each side of the barn with a corridor running up the middle and large doors at either end.  Tack, equipment and feed rooms may also be incorporated into the main barn.  In large complexes, indoor arenas, horse walkers and treatment areas may also be incorporated.
  • The whole stabling section is undercover 
  • Large numbers of horses can be housed under one roof making their day to day care easier and more labour saving
  • High roofs allow for good ventilation 
  • All the horses can see each other and what is going on around them preventing boredom
  • Many barns have windows to the rear of the stable allowing the horse free access to fresh air
  • The horses individual equipment can be stored close to their own stable
  • Some horses find the busy atmosphere stressful.
  • Any infection that occurs can rapidly spread throughout a barn situation
  • Tying up facilities can be limited outside the stable
  • Horses with allergies to hay or straw can be more difficult to manage unless horses in several of the surrounding boxes are also on allergy free feed and bedding

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