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Build a Career with Horses

If you have an affinity with horses and want to develop a career in the thoroughbred breeding industry you will find an education pathway here.

For more information contact Ellie Aykroyd, Breeding Education Coordinator.
P: 027 201 2699

Breeding - Level 3

This programme will provide the skills and knowledge to assist with all aspects of breeding, mating, and the early education of young horses providing a solid foundation for your career. 

The course includes the following-

Assisting practically with:

  • Teasing

  • Foaling

  • Handling, routine health and nutrition of weanlings and yearlings

  • Routine care of paddocked horses

Knowledge with:

  • Reproductive physiology and cycling

  • Equine conformation

  • Pasture management

  • Prevention, identification, and treatment of ailments

  • Communicating and working in a team and legislative obligations in equine workplace

Duration: 13 months

Cost: $295

 NZQA New Zealand Certificate in Equine Breeding (Stud Groom) Level 3

Breeding - Level 4

Formalise your workplace learning and gain an accredited Level 4 NZ qualification by completing this breeding apprenticeship.

Implement and monitor:

  • Stud farm breeding programme and teasing

  • Foaling, post foaling activities, foal development

  • Foal development

  • Educating weanlings to yearlings and managing health and nutrition

  • Yearling preparation programme through to sales

  • Assessing and evaluating conformation and action

  • Pasture and feed management

  • Preventative health programme

  • Health and safety plan for a workplace

Knowledge of:

  • Equine physiology and psychology

  • Fostering orphan foals

  • Managing conformation faults

  • Evolution of the thoroughbred

  • Evaluating potential and practical aspects of genetics

  • Evaluating pasture production methods

Duration:  22 months

Qualification: NZQA Level 4

Why industry based training?

Students who successfully complete these courses have a number of competitive advantages in terms of a rewarding career in the thoroughbred industry, including:

  • New Zealand Certificate in Equine Breeding (level 3 and/or 4)

  • Eligibility to apply industry sponsored scholarships to the Irish National Stud

  • Increased employment opportunities both nationally and worldwide

  • Complimentary membership to the NZTBA whilst studying, including the Stallion Register


  • Employed in the NZ industry

  • Age at least 16 years, with no upper limit

  • Good health, sound character and motivation to succeed
    within the industry

To find out more email Ellie on

Explore different career options and view current vacancies in the industry.

If you are a student who are interested in horses and would like to use equine unit standards towards your NCEA achievements NZTR can assist in providing the necessary contacts, resources, workbooks, assessments and support.

From stable assistant to jockey, the Primary ITO covers all facets of the racing industry in their courses offered in New Zealand.


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