Researchers lay out formula for fear-free horse handling and veterinary care
Fear-fear horse husbandry and veterinary treatment are achievable, say researchers, but humans need to step up to reach the goal.
Husbandry and veterinary procedures have the potential to generate fear and stress in animals. In horses, their responses can pose a significant safety risk to the people involved, as well as to the animal itself.
Traditionally, physical restraint, punishment, and/or the threat of an aversive stimulus have been the most common strategies used to achieve compliance.
“However, from a welfare perspective, this is less than ideal,” Sharon Carroll, Benjamin Sykes and Paul Mills wrote in the journal Animals.
“This approach also has the potential for creating a more dangerous response from the horse in future similar situations.”... [more]