Horse People are a Different Breed

This past weekend as I was sitting in my nice comfy chair, sipping on my vitamin water, jump judging at a horse trial, my friend Michelle (Presto’s “other” mother, and owner of Willow Tree Warmbloods) was attending her very first breeder’s course.

Michelle in a cleaner, more palatable scenario

In these courses you learn to do some of the vet work yourself, to avoid having to haul mares and foals to the vet a lot, reduce some of the cost, and make everyone’s life a little less stressful in general. When you’re breeding several mares a year, many of which have foals at their side, and the closest vet is an hour haul away, the simple act of going for an ultrasound becomes an ordeal and introduces some unnecessary risk. Hence why a lot of breeders choose to buy some of their own equipment and do the basic stuff themselves. A lot of it isn’t rocket science.

So there’s Michelle, arm-deep in a mare, taking her first shot at an artificial insemination. That’s a normal thing for your average wife and mother to be doing on a Sunday afternoon, right? Her friend had even come along with her to the course, so she can help assist Michelle with her mares during breeding season. As Michelle was completing her first go at AI, she simultaneously learned what can happen when the mare has a full bladder.

The best part of this, once I was able to stop crying from laughing so hard, were the reactions when she posted this on her facebook page. All the breeders and horse people were like “Oh yeah, that’s happened to me too – warning, don’t wear boots unless you can seal the top!” wheras all the non-horse people were somewhere between squeamish and vomiting. The guys more so than the women, of course. It really highlighted just how much gross stuff we, the species known as Horse People, become completely accustomed to over time.

I showed the video to the SO and he was part laughing and part looking like he might throw up. That of course just made me laugh even harder. Then I had to make a meme for Michelle because that’s the kind of friend I am.


We horse people definitely do a lot of gross stuff. I’ve been shot in the face with puss, hit in the head with poop, touched so much pee that it doesn’t even register anymore, had smegma in places no one ever should, been elbow deep in a mare to reposition a foal, covered in snot from head to toe on a fairly regular basis, and laid out and inspected a lot of placentas. Not even deterred. In fact, I took way more pictures of that one infected placenta than could ever be considered normal. Because fascinating. But bring in a human with a cut and I am OUT. Or human babies and poop. Gross. Nasty. Ew.

There’s so much we do every day and don’t even blink at anymore, yet normal people would find revolting. Like the time SO went running to the bathroom to wash his hands because Henry left a lot of slobber behind in the process of eating a peppermint.

Image result for newb gif

We’re weird people, that’s for sure, but there aren’t too many badass chicks out there who can say they know how to AI a mare. You might be covered in piss, Michelle, but high five to you girl. Horse People are my favorite. Oh and extra special thanks to your friend for getting it on video, since I’ve watched it more times now than I care to admit. That is pure entertainment right there.

18 thoughts on “Horse People are a Different Breed

  1. I realized this when I took my SO on the gator to pick poop in the paddocks. He was driving so I could scoop and I accidentally flung some dry poop at his back. 😂 he freaked out, meanwhile I used my hands to wipe it off the seat. Not to even mention moving stall mats bare handed. If you wipe your hands on your breeches they’re clean, right?


  2. We know you are crazy and I am pretty sure Michelle is too:) LOL but yes us horse people don’t get fazed by much it is true but not sure being peed on is on my bucket list 🙂 Poor Michelle….and you laughing at her!! LOL

    Sounds interesting though taking a course like that. Good for her!!

    And i have just learned not to show some things to Mark. HA


  3. Wow that gave me a good laugh to start the morning! Thanks for that!

    I definitely am perfectly fine to be covered in whatever horse related nasty comes my way, but give me a human kid and I will find even the most basic things gross and be out of there. Horse people are definitely different!


  4. People germs gross me out. I can eat without washing my hands (and eating with my hands) after handling horses but watch me in a public restroom and I’m a germaphobe. Just this morning I had to stick a 60ml syringe full of betadine solution into Amber’s abscess and flush it out. I helped flush and re-bandage a horse that literally had a hole in his head and could breathe out of it. We absolutely are a different breed of people. As long as I can’t smell like an infection or anything else, I’m good and can handle pretty much anything medical.


  5. I took a breeding management class my senior year of college, and got to do everything from foaling out, teasing, learning to AI, and collecting stallions. My favorite part of the class though was when we had OTHER classes come to the barn for a day to get some horse experience, and the looks on their faces when we were collecting the stallions; it was a hilarious mixture of fear and disgust. As an animal person you learn to deal with some nasty stuff and touch parts of animals that aren’t considered appropriate without blinking an eye.


  6. Yep. More fascinated than squeamish…with animals and humans. Though I do get dizzy/waves of nausea when I have to look at injuries on myself oddly enough. If human poop and vomit are involved though…noping right out of that if at all possible! (Whereby “possible” means I’m not working ski patrol and have an option to leave, otherwise I may be obligated to deal.)


  7. Lol! I hate to laugh at Michelle, because it IS gross… but oh man, that was hilarious! You’re right, we’re pretty cool with weird horse bodily functions. The only things I can’t handle is really stinky puss. When I was a barn manager after college, a boarder horse had sinus surgery. While it was being operated on, they had to do a tracheotomy. They just leave that hole there to close itself up afterward. But ugh, it’s the most disgusting, stinky, pussy thing you’ll ever see. And said boarder was not a dedicated owner so I was stuck cleaning that thing until it healed. Still makes me want to gag. Blech.
    Also, I think my profound fear of vomit is one of the many reasons I love horses. They don’t do that.


  8. That video was awesome. We definitely do have some things that we just consider normal that other people cannot stand. I’ve had my husband tell me to quit talking about stuff horse related while eating. None of it grossed me out but somehow it bothered him. lol


  9. Sheath cleaning is my super weird thing. I had a gelding that got massive infections if you didn’t regularly clean him. I am so accustom to it now that I don’t even realize that I am doing it. One of the girls at my barn brought out her boyfriend. She was in the grooming bay across from me and I swear to you I literally was not thinking about it at all until I saw the look on her bf’s face when I realized my entire forearm was up in “there.” Winifred still isn’t a fan but Luther is so used to it now that he just drops and lets me pick at it.


  10. The look on a guy’s face as he walked down the stable aisle when my arm was half way up my gelding’s outdoor plumbing while singing to myself an old Frank Sinatra ballad: “This is a lovely way to spend an evening.”


  11. That video is great. 10/10 will watch again. And again. And again.

    FWIW baby poop is WAY MORE disgusting than even the grossest horse poop. And i have a bad gag reflex.


  12. I was dubbed the “spleen queen” when I worked at the vet clinic because I was the one who always scrubbed in for the splenectomies (thanks, stable carny hands!) And I wore that title proud. Vet tech people are a weird bunch. Horse people rank up right along with them.

    I am glad you shared the story behind that picture. I laughed when I saw it, then immediately wanted to know what Michelle was up to with that straw. I’d be fascinated just to tag along on a course like that. She’s just learning all the things. I’m jealous, even if she is covered in pee.


  13. I remember working at a summer camp and our manure trailer would get full so we’d climb in/on it to pull the wheelbarrows on top… in flip flops. We’d just wash our legs off afterwards. Everyone else at the camp thought we were insane.


  14. My grossest horse memory was when Iw as shadowing with the equine vet, and we were called to a horse who had an abscess in his chest. He was horned, is that the term?, by the next door neighbors steer when he jumped into their paddock. The assault resulted in a piece of his sternum breaking off, and his body was literally trying to push the broken shard of bone out, which resulted in this pus filled abscess. After removing the dead bone, we cleaned the area, and put in place a drain. The puddle of pus that came out of that thing was awful, smelled like death.

    After we finished with him, the owner had a question about her other horse, so we moved on. When we were finished we walked back to the car, and passed by the owners 3 year old son PLAYING IN THE PUS PUDDLE. I’d never been so sure of never having children in my life.


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