Requirements for Horse Owners Certificates




  • The reasons for shoeing and recognition of when shoeing or re-shoeing is required.  A knowledge of the basic structure of the foot.  Farrier's tools and use.  How to remove a shoe safely in an emergency.
  • Recognition of common injuries and basic first aid.  Arresting bleeding and treatments for different types of wounds.
  • Knowledge of watering and feeding of the stabled horse and the horse at grass.  Feeding in all seasons.  Feeding for light work.
  • Care and maintenance of grassland.  To include the maintenance of fences, gates, shelter, watering etc.  care and improvement of the grassland to include a knowledge of harmful weeds and their control.
  • The care of saddlery, to include inspection for soundness of saddles.  A knowledge of the fitting and use of more items of equipment i.e. martingales, breastplates, boots etc.
  • The necessity of insurance to cover all aspects of the horse and its use.
  • Stable routine for two horses.  To include all the extra jobs that need to be undertaken e.g. drains, guttering, paintwork, cleanliness of yard etc.
  • The highway code.
  • The country code, including the correct and courteous use of bridleways.  (volunteers to help with bridleways work, are encouraged to contact their bridleways officer).


  • The recognition, treatment and care of common injuries and ailments, further to level two.
  • Changes from management in the stable to management at grass and vice-versa.  The procedures for getting a horse up from a period at grass e.g., teeth, worming etc. and the procedure for roughing -off a horse.
  • Clipping, trimming and plaiting.
  • Care and maintenance of horse transport; to include both horse boxes and trailers.  A knowledge of the law regarding the transit of horses.  Weight ratios for trailers and legal requirements with regard to towing.  Preparation of the horse for travel.  A knowledge of equipment needed with regard to length of journey and the climatic conditions.
  • The care of the horse trekking and in competitive events.  Understand fitness and condition, and the maintenance of both.
  • Knowledge of good and bad stable construction.  Different types of stabling.  Basic requirements of planning regulations.  Layout of stable yard to include handling and disposal of the muck heap.
  • Knowledge of horse clothing and bandaging.  Care and maintenance of both.
  • Recognition of good and bad forage.  Knowledge of different grasses found in hay samples and ability to identify weeds and poor grasses.  Storage of forage.
  • Have a working knowledge of the costs involved in keeping a horse.
  • Have a knowledge of the activities of :- The British Horse Society, Riding Clubs and The Pony Club.


  • Knowledge of the main systems in the horse (respiration, Reproduction, Digestive, Immune, etc), their function and common problems associated with these systems, (COPD, Colic etc).
  • Knowledge of various grasses, conditions for growth and beneficial properties.  procedures for improving pasture i.e. drainage, cross grazing, re-seeding, fertilisers etc.  Calendar of management for grassland.  Haymaking-types and methods.
  • Vitamins/Minerals - difference between them and why they may be deficient in the diet.  Mane main vitamins/minerals and their uses.  Weights and types of feed available for : Riding school horses, hunters, competition horses etc.
  • Knowledge of structure of the tooth and the ageing characteristics.  Description of structure of the mouth and common problems that may result from poor conformation of this.
  • Name and structure of different types of remedial shoes.  Give description of the condition under which these shoes may be used and the way in which they effect improvement/relief.
  • List the basic principles of sick nursing and the reasons/conditions for implementing these.  Describe the way in which these principles may help to reduce severity of a condition/injury and any problems that may arise as a result.
  • Outline the basic principles of fitting various saddles (dressage, jumping, xc, gp) and bridles (snaffles, double bridle).  Describe the use of specific 'bits' and gadgets, (draw reins, balancing reins, market harborough, De Gouge, etc) and the way in which they work.
  • List common stable vices and there possible causes.  Also suggested ways to stop such vices and the preventative steps that can be taken to limit these.
  • A general knowledge of the BHS and its departments, structures etc.  Awareness of the BHS qualifications system and the BHS register of instructors.
  • Action to be taken in the event of an accident.  A knowledge of RIDDOR and legal obligations of an instructor.