The Horse Welfare Alliance of Canada has launched an online training program in an effort to increase awareness around nationally developed guidelines for the care and handling of equines.
“This new video series provides a timely refresher about management and welfare practices for the animals in our care,” said project coordinator Mikki Shatosky. “Be it housing, health management, transportation or other animal husbandry practices, there are requirements and recommendations that must be part of our everyday routines.”
The videos are structured around the 10 sections of the Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Equines. They range from five to 40 minutes in length.
“The online program is designed for participants to work through sections at their own pace,” said Shatosky.
Participants can choose to explore individual components and move through training units on the Horse Welfare Alliance of Canada website at no cost or — if they are looking for a more structured approach and certification — can pay a fee of $25. The latter includes testing upon course completion as well as a certificate.
In addition to the videos, there are also assessment checklists to assist owners, custodians, industry specialists and professionals. These cover items such as welfare inspections, cruelty investigations and aid in determining outcomes for accepted standards of care.
“The intent of our support tools is to provide access to the latest information while encouraging the highest quality care,” said Shatosky. “Not only do our checklists prompt owners to ask key questions before a care arrangement is established, they also facilitate continuous improvement.”
Horse Welfare Alliance of Canada was established in 2008, and includes provincial equine organizations, farm animal care groups and others in the animal agriculture industry.