What to Do for Your Horse Business During COVID-19

What to Do for Your Horse Business During COVID-19

If you're concerned about the impact of COVID-19 on your horse business, you're certainly not alone. Times are uncertain, but we want you to know that the GoHorse community is here to support you in any way we can. 

 

How can you continue to operate without exposing yourself and your clients to the virus? We’re so glad you asked! Here’s a list of ideas to get the ball rolling for you. 

 

  • Social Distancing - The great thing about horses is that we already practice some of the CDC’s COVID-19 social distancing recommendations in our regular routines. Riders SHOULD already be giving each other plenty of room, but if you want to be extra careful, you can cancel group lessons and stick to 1:1 instruction. Also, if you have a sound system, use that to put plenty of distance between you and your clients. 

  • Disinfect - Make sure to wipe down shared tack, gate latches, door handles, bucket handles, muck rakes and brooms, spray out helmets, and disinfect everything that’s touched by multiple hands. The more you can stop the spread of germs around your property or work area, the safer you'll be. A recent study suggests that the virus can live up to 3 days on plastic and metal.  Have employees and riders wash their hands when arriving and again before leaving. 

  • Communicate - Let your clients know what you are doing to combat the spread of germs, how they can help, and what expectations you have for them during their time with you. The more you can put people at ease and prepare them for changes, the better they will be received. 

  • Relax Cancelation Policies - The last thing you want to do is have a client push through a session or appointment because they don’t want to pay a cancelation fee. Relax your cancellation policies or offer to let people reschedule instead of cancel. Make it as easy as possible for people to back out when they are not feeling well. Also, make sure that you shut things down if you start feeling unhealthy yourself. 

  • Offer Lessons During Working Hours - Many students are out of school, but parents are still working. If you serve kids in any capacity, offer sessions during working hours so parents don’t have to worry about what their kids are up to while they are at work. 

  • Discourage “Hanging-Out” - Coming to enjoy a session with the horses is GREAT. Hanging out in groups in the tack room or other areas is a recipe for disaster. Be clear that you would like your clients to arrive on time and leave promptly. Limit hanging out unless it's for 1:1 horse time. 

  • Offer a Horse to Lean On - Times are stressful for many right now, and we all know a horse to lean on goes a LOT farther than what most humans can offer. Encourage your clients to spend time with the horses. Groom them or get some exercise and fresh air cleaning a paddock or stall. Just make sure to ask them to wipe down grooming and cleaning equipment when they are done. 

  • Be Self-Sufficient - If you travel to your clients, for example, equine photography, horseshoeing, or equine bodywork, offer to pull the horse out yourself and handle the session alone (as long as you have a previously established relationship with the horse and feel comfortable doing so). This cuts down on human contact and allows you to maintain your regular working schedule. Just be extra careful to close gates before you leave!

  • List your business on the GoHorse Map - As more and more people look for activities to participate in that are social distancing friendly, we are going to be encouraging them to use the GoHorse map to find horse fun near them. Make sure your business is listed, and all your information is filled out so that people can find you!

 

Sending you best wishing for good health as we weather this crisis!