Duties of a Stable Hand

white horse in stable image by Clarence Alford from Fotolia.com

Stable hands work in the horse racing industry, either at a racetrack or at a horse ranch where horses are trained or lodged. A stable hand is referred to as a strapper in most working environments.

The stable hand will be responsible for several horses at one time and most trainers begin their careers in this position.

Grooming Duties

A stable hand is responsible for the grooming of each horse under his supervision. This includes washing the horse after a workout, cleaning the hooves, brushing the mane and tail as well as brushing down the horse each day. The stable hand cleans and brushes the horse's teeth and cuts the hair of a horse before each showing or race.

Feeding Duties

The stable hand feeds all the horses she is in charge of and maintains the feeding schedule. This feeding schedule includes the time at which each horse is fed as well as what food is to be given to the horses. Not all horses have the same diet, and the stable hand is responsible for maintaining the dietary needs of each individual horse.

Workout and Training

The stable hand assists the trainer when working the horses at the stable or ranch. As part of the training of a horse, the stable hand helps the trainer teach the horse how to race or takes the horse through a series of directed exercises each day.

Cleaning Duties

Cleaning the stables and stalls is the duty of the stable hand. Manure needs to be removed from the stalls where the horses are kept each day and new bedding placed inside the stalls for the comfort of the horses. Bedding consists of sawdust or hay, which is spread out over the floor of the stall.

Medications and Prescriptions

The stable hand administers medications, supplements and prescriptions as directed by the owner, trainer or doctor. This is done on a scheduled basis and the stable hand is responsible for maintaining the documentation of each dose, time administered and any results, including any adverse reactions to the health care.