Unit of competency details

ACMEQU203 - Provide basic care of horses (Release 1)


ReleaseStatusRelease date
1 1 (this release)Current 29/Nov/2017

Usage recommendation:

Training packages that include this unit


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 050105 Animal Husbandry  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 050105 Animal Husbandry  14/Feb/2018 
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Unit Of competency

Modification History



Release 1

This version released with ACM Animal Care and Management Training Package Version 1.0.


This unit of competency describes the skills and knowledge required to groom and monitor the basic health and welfare of suitably educated and calm horses.

It covers identifying and reporting workplace hazards and risks of interacting with horses, and the application of industry guidelines and procedures to ensure the welfare and safety of handlers and the horse.

The unit applies to individuals who have no experience, limited experience or no recent experience working in the relevant horse industry sector. They undertake defined routine activities under supervision with limited responsibility for their own work. Working environments may include stables, paddocks and yards.

No licensing or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication, except for the racing industry, where requirements vary between states and territories. Users working in the racing industry are advised to contact the relevant Principal Racing Authority for advice on current requirements.

Health and safety and animal welfare legislation relevant to interacting with horses applies to workers in this industry. As requirements vary between industry sectors and state/territory jurisdictions, users must check with the relevant authority for specific requirements.

NOTE: The terms 'occupational health and safety' (OHS) and 'work health and safety' (WHS) generally have the same meaning in the workplace. In jurisdictions where the national model WHS legislation has not been implemented, RTOs must contextualise the unit of competency by referring to current OHS legislative requirements.

Pre-requisite Unit

Prerequisite unit of competency for this unit is:

  • ACMEQU202 Handle horses safely.

Note the following chain of prerequisites that also applies to this unit.

Unit of competency 

Prerequisite requirement 

ACMEQU202 Handle horses safely

ACMEQU205 Apply knowledge of horse behaviour

Unit Sector

Equine (EQU)

Elements and Performance Criteria


Performance Criteria 

Elements describe the essential outcomes.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Maintain basic health and welfare of horses

1.1 Follow supervisor instructions and clarify information relating to assigned activities

1.2 Assess risk and report hazards before handling horses

1.3 Detect signs of common horse ailments and good health in horses based on key characteristics of horse anatomy and physiology

1.4 Observe and report signs of horse health to supervisor using correct horse sector terminology

1.5 Use safe horse handling practices to check horses for condition

1.6 Follow stable hygiene and quarantine practices related to horse health care

1.7 Check horse hooves and legs for soreness, inflammation and lameness

1.8 Assist in the provision of basic first aid treatment for minor injuries

2. Groom and rug a horse

2.1 Select and prepare required grooming equipment according to workplace practices

2.2 Position and tie up horse safely in preparation for grooming

2.3 Groom horse according to workplace requirements and supervisor instructions

2.4 Check horse for illness or injury during grooming and report any observed irregularities to supervisor

2.5 Clean, dress and check horse hooves and shoes for cracks, heat and other irregularities

2.6 Fit rugs according to the conditions and stable routine

2.7 Clean, store and maintain grooming tools and personal protective equipment (PPE)

2.8 Identify and report hazards in the work environment to supervisor

Foundation Skills

This section describes those language, literacy, numeracy and employment skills that are essential for performance in this unit of competency but are not explicit in the performance criteria.



Oral communication

  • Use active listening and questioning techniques to clarify and confirm supervisor instructions

Navigate the world of work

  • Follow workplace procedures, including work health and safety and animal welfare requirements, relating to own role and work area
  • Demonstrate a duty of care to self and others when working with horses

Get the work done

  • Plan and sequence tasks and assemble resources required to provide basic care of horses

Unit Mapping Information

Code and title current version 

Code and title previous version 


Equivalence status 

ACMEQU203 Provide basic care of horses

Not applicable

New unit

No equivalent unit


Companion Volumes, including Implementation Guides, are available at VETNet: - https://vetnet.education.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=b75f4b23-54c9-4cc9-a5db-d3502d154103


Assessment requirements

Modification History



Release 1

This version released with ACM Animal Care and Management Training Package Version 1.0.

Performance Evidence

An individual demonstrating competency in this unit must satisfy all of the elements and performance criteria of this unit.

There must be evidence that the individual provided basic care, under supervision, for at least three suitably educated, calm, consistent and obedient horses, including the following points for each of the three horses:

  • communicating effectively with supervisor, including reporting hazards and risks
  • using safe horse handling practices
  • following animal welfare and work health and safety (WHS) practices in the context of own work
  • grooming and rugging horse according to stable or daily routine
  • monitoring basic horse health and welfare
  • identifying signs and symptoms of lameness
  • reporting signs of horse illness or injury to supervisor
  • assisting with the provision of first aid and/or other treatments, including:
  • providing simple restraint techniques through use of head collar, halter and lead and positioning of horses
  • ensuring safe disposal of materials used for treatments according to WHS and biosecurity requirements.

Knowledge Evidence

An individual must be able to demonstrate the knowledge required to perform the tasks outlined in the elements and performance criteria of this unit. This includes knowledge of:

  • basic horse anatomy and physiology as it relates to characteristics of healthy and unhealthy horses
  • indicators of common horse ailments and conditions
  • routine horse health requirements
  • first aid treatment for minor injuries in horses
  • horse grooming and rugging procedures
  • reporting processes within the work environment
  • general signs of a healthy horse and which signs to report to a supervisor
  • safe horse handling zones when providing treatments and medications
  • cleaning and maintenance requirements for different items of gear and personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • types and purpose of PPE
  • tools and equipment to undertake routine horse care duties.

Assessment Conditions

Assessment of skills must take place under the following conditions:

  • physical conditions:
  • a workplace or an environment that accurately represents workplace conditions
  • resources, equipment and materials:
  • various suitably educated, calm, consistent and obedient horses assessed as suitable for the experience and skill of the individual
  • PPE correctly fitted and appropriate for activity
  • appropriate tack for individual, horse and activity
  • specifications:
  • work instructions
  • relationships with others
  • supervisor.

Training and assessment strategies must show evidence of the use of guidance provided in the Companion Volume: User Guide: Safety in Equine Training.

Assessors of this unit must satisfy the requirements for assessors in applicable vocational education and training legislation, frameworks and/or standards.


Companion Volumes, including Implementation Guides, are available at VETNet: - https://vetnet.education.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=b75f4b23-54c9-4cc9-a5db-d3502d154103

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