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Life Update  

veralidaine
Reputable Member

Hi!

It's been a while since I was really active on this website and a lot of stuff has happened since then.

I finished school in December 2013 and then technically 'graduated' in February 2014 from the University of Guelph with my Bachelor of Science, majoring in Animal Biology and minoring in Nutrition. Some of you guys may remember me mentioning my club 'Promoters of Exotic Animal Companionship' or PEXAC. I managed to get a new executive for it but I'm not totally sure things are happening with the group. It'll be disappointing if it dies but I'm still determined to find a way to champion exotic animal ownership, even if that's on hold right now.

After I finished school, I moved back in with my parents and started looking for a job. In January, I got a part-time job with Quiznos through my sister, who was a supervisor there. It was crappy and I hardly got any hours but it was experience for my resume. In april, I got a job doing data entry through a temp agency. My shift was from 3:30 PM until midnight which was interesting. It wasn't particularly great but it was full-time and paid better than Quiznos so I was able to pay off my student loan and credit card balance from school. Through Yardandgroom.com, I got an internship at a horse breeding farm outside of Magog, Quebec where they bred and trained horses for trail riding. I started in August and was supposed to go to November. Although the owner of the farm had told me that she felt it took 2 months to train somebody so that they could work independantly, after 1 month, she sat me down and told me that 'it wasn't working out' because of 'little things here and there'. Ummm...so I'm only getting little things wrong halfway through my training period (and I was being left alone for hours of a time to handle things by myself and did it properly) and that's bad? What's more is she was barely around for that month, I was working with the Barn Manager, who seemed happy with me.

So, the owner observes me a handful of times and decides that I'm not handling the horses safely, even though I have been doing so for a month (40 hours a week) and have had no problems at all. Also, she quoted some 'issue' where she had asked me to do something and I did it the way the barn manager had taught me and the way that had been working for that month but because it wasn't the way SHE did things (and I really don't think she's aware of how things are done on her own farm), she thought that I must not be paying attention or something. And then she confirmed that she's the type to jump to conclusions on very little evidence when she said that she would recommend me for a job that included exercising horses, not training young ones. As much as I liked hearing something positive, the fact is, she had only seen me ride once and I had been walking the whole time. The barn manager had seen me ride twice and had been impressed but I hadn't even cantered in either time, so even if the barn manager had passed on to the owner that I was a good rider, I still don't see how that's enough info to be able to recommend, as one horseperson to another, me for a job exercising somebody's horse.

Anyway, so I stayed for a few more weeks until they could get another intern. Ultimately I'm happy with my experience. I got to work on my french (although I am still far from bilingual :icon-frown: ) and I got experience handling, washing, grooming, and bandaging horses, tacking up horses, doing daily barn chores, mucking paddocks, handling a stallion and foals (or cute assholes, as I like to call them now), lunging horses with or without a lead, applying topical medication, giving oral medication, holding horses for injections and farrierwork, and how to deal with horses that have a contagious illness.

I am on my way to getting my UK passport which will allow me to live and work anywhere in the EU. Yardandgroom has horse-related jobs all over the world and I would love to get a short-term one in Italy, Spain, or France.

So when I moved back in with my parents, it was back to job-hunting. It took a while but I will be starting another full-time temp job on Monday doing data entry.

In addition to hoping to be able to apply for horse-related jobs in Europe next Spring, I will also go to the February job fair for the Bowmanville Zoo where they train animals for film and TV in the hopes that I will be able to learn that.

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Topic starter Posted : October 22, 2014 9:35 pm
Ash
 Ash
Admin Admin

That's weird about the horse job... Doesn't make much sense to me. icon_confused.gif If you felt you were doing really well, then probably it was a different reason that she wanted you gone. Very strange though. Sorry it didn't go well. I guess it wasn't meant to be. :shrug:

It sounds like you've got a good plan though. And I think that'd be really neat if you could go to the UK to work. They're much more open to exotics there, and you could probably meet up with some owners. Smile
Fingers crossed that it works out for you! And good luck at the job fair. Grin

I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!

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Posted : October 22, 2014 10:30 pm
veralidaine
Reputable Member

So I'm not sure if I'm going to make it to the job fair but I'm being interviewed for a a summer job at a small zoo about an hour from me; http://www.saunderscountry.com/

The nice thing is that they started out as private owners of exotics, breed bengals and when I spoke to one of the owners on the phone, occasionally sells lemurs, so I feel comfortable about working for them. When we spoke, he also seemed impressed that I had started a pro-exotic club. I'm still looking for a job in the meantime. It's tough.

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Topic starter Posted : January 28, 2015 10:45 pm
Ash
 Ash
Admin Admin

Good luck. That's actually great if they started out as private breeders, because they'll see you in them. And starting a pro-exotics club will look good to them too since they believe in private ownership. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you. It would be amazing, and an invaluable experience to have that kind of opportunity.

I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!

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Posted : January 29, 2015 2:57 pm
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