Groenvoer Groom Training Course

The course will provide basic feeding, grooming, tack, farrier and vet care guidelines.  The tutors will include feed analyst Penny Barnes, veterinary nurse Nikita Ware, farrier Mitzi van der Merwe and stable yard owner Karen Portman, owner of Capriole Stables.  We will have translators.

The feeding tutorial includes

  • Short overview of different horse types and conformation
  • Why horses need balanced rations – what contribution do the different ingredients make to the horse’s well-being
  • What determines the feeding of different protein feeds 10%, 12% or 14%
  • Danger signs of unacceptable quality in feed and fodder
  • The importance of weighing feed
  • Regular feeding as a colic prevention step
  • Stock control
  • Poisonous paddock plants

The grooms will also be shown how we mix our Groenvoer feeds.

The stable management lessons will include

  • Correct mucking out
  • Dismantling a bridle, cleaning, oiling and re-assembling it
  • The correct way to hold and store saddlery
  • How to put a halter on and how to lead a horse
  • How to groom a horse
  • How to saddle up
  • Inspecting paddocks and arenas for faulty fencing which could cause injury
  • Lunging
  • Exercise – the importance of gradually building up a program

The basic veterinary lesson will cover

  • Danger signs – what to watch out for and when to phone the vet
  • How to prepare for the vet’s visit
  • Common horse care mistakes
  • Hoof care
  • Treating small abrasions
  • Bandaging sprained muscles
  • Deworming – how and when to administer, and the importance of regular removal of droppings from paddocks
  • First aid kit essentials

The grooms will also be provided with notes and graphics to take home with them. These will include a list of First Aid Kit essentials, worm cycle charts, basic anatomy, stock sheets to facilitate different feeding schedules, re-order reminders and telephone contact numbers.

The grooms will also receive a certificate at the end of the course, and a small memento of the course.

We want to give your groom a new appreciation of his role in the management of your animals.

We know that we produce superior quality feed. 

We want it fed to your animals by well trained grooms – holistic animal management at its best.

Grooming Tips

When grooming a horse, start at the top of his neck and work your way to his rear, then switch sides and repeat. Make sure your horse or pony is safely tied wearing a leather halter or by using 'quick-release' snaps on cross-ties.

  1. Start with the Rubber Curry. The rubber curry should be used in a circular motion to loosen dirt that has settled under the horse's hair. NOTE: be very careful and gentle around bony areas of your horse's body (such as his back or shoulders). Don't use a Rubber Curry on your horse's legs unless you can be extremely gentle with it. Never use a Curry or any stiff brush on your horse's face. It's too easy for your horse to injure his eye on the rubber curry or stiff bristled brush, and eye injuries are usually serious, needing immediate veterinarian attention.

  2. Next, use the Dandy Brush. The motion for this brush is like the same motion you would use when sweeping a floor. You 'flick' the brush away and up from the coat so that the dirt comes off of his coat. Unless your horse is already extremely clean, you should see a slight cloud of dust with each stroke. If you don't, you need more "flicking" action with this brush. If you don't use this "flicking" motion, the dirt will just get pushed back under the hair, potentially causing irritation to the horse.

  3. Then, you use the Body Brush. The body brush is meant to smooth down the hair and to get rid of any traces of left-over dirt after you have thoroughly used the Dandy Brush. With the Body Brush, you do not use a 'flicking' motion, instead, you smooth it flat over the horse's coat to flatten the hair. This brush often gives the horse a shiny, clean appearance (but only when the brushes are used in this order!)

  4. Next, use the Mane Comb to gently comb the horse's mane. Use the Dandy Brush to brush the horse's tail. Many people use the comb to brush their horse's tails, but I don't use a comb since it breaks the hairs more easily. If you want the horse to grow a long, flowing tail, you should use the Dandy brush instead (or don't brush the tail at this case, you could use warm water to rinse the tail, then apply a tail conditioner or Show Sheen to keep the tail from tangling or getting knots).

  5. Now, on to the feet! You should first have your instructor show you how to pick up a horse's feet. Usually, this can be done by running your hand down your horse's leg, then gently squeezing his fetlock (ankle). Be sure not to pick up the horse's foot too high, or he might loose balance. When you use the Hoof Pick, always scrape away from you, just as you would if you were using a carrot peeler. You don't want to accidently injure yourself or your horse if he suddenly moves or pulls his foot away. It is important to thoroughly clean out the hollow areas on both sides of the frog, and around the sole of the foot.

  6. The last step is using the Towel. A plain towel or rag will do, just wipe it over the horse's coat to bring out the shine.

You're all done!

When you are finished riding, it is good to give the horse another grooming to remove any sweat marks or dirt that accumulated from the arena or trail. It is also a wonderful 'after riding' reward for horses who like to be groomed.