Equine charity looks at the horse-human partnership and considers “what’s in it for the horse”? - Veterinary Practice
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Equine charity looks at the horse-human partnership and considers “what’s in it for the horse”?

Anyone with an interest in animal welfare, horses, racing or equestrian sport is encouraged to register

On Thursday November 12 2020 at 9.45am a galaxy of equestrian professionals and supporters – and the charity’s President Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal – join World Horse Welfare live to consider the many facets of the horse-human partnership and just what’s “in it” for the horse. Anyone with an interest in animal welfare, horses, racing or equestrian sport is encouraged to register for the charity’s free-to-watch, virtual annual conference.

Horses and humans have a long and multi-faceted history together, stretching back in history, with horses being seen as food, a means of transportation, working animals, comrades-in-arms during war, sporting partners, companions and, increasingly, a type of therapy or simply animals that we choose to spend our leisure time with. The line-up of speakers will explore this complex and evolving relationship and consider how much horses actually, or could, benefit from their partnership with people.

Speakers include:

  • Dr Madeleine Campbell, Senior Lecturer in Human-Animal Interactions and Ethics at the Royal Veterinary College, on the ethics of involving horses in sport and leisure
  • Peter Thornber, Adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland, Australia, on how governments can and should do more for the benefit of working horses, donkeys and mules
  • Meta Osborne, Thoroughbred breeder and vet, on the balance of the horse-human partnership in racing
  • Debbie Matthews, Founder of Go Racing Green and rehomer of World Horse Welfare Rosie, on the transformational nature of the horse-human partnership
  • Charlie Bain, Chief Operating Officer of Digitalis, a technology company that specialises in online reputation management, crisis communications and digital privacy and risk will speak about the other pandemic: fake news.

The live discussion panel, which will take questions from the virtual audience via Slido, is likely to be lively, featuring representatives from government, equitation science, politics and the media. The panel will be chaired by Mike Cattermole, well-known horse-racing journalist and broadcaster and features Scotland’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Sheila Voas; Andrew McLean, a prolific author on the science and ethics of horse training; Zimbabwe’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Josphat Nyika; Caroline Nokes MP for Romsey and Southampton North who is a World Horse Welfare Trustee and former Chief Executive of the National Pony Society; and Paris-based equine and science journalist, Christa Lesté-Lasserre.

The charity’s President HRH The Princess Royal will provide her views on the theme at 1pm, and after a short break there will be three presentations demonstrating how World Horse Welfare works to improve the benefits of partnership to horses. This includes how the charity lays the foundations of a positive partnership with an abused or feral horse; how they work with governments and policy makers to influence real change to improve equine welfare during transport and how their international teams provide immediate support to the horses and their owners affected by emergencies and natural disasters.

The conference will run until 2.30pm, and anyone interested in watching live and having the opportunity to ask questions during the event can register their interest.

The charity’s YouTube channel will also broadcast the conference live, and it will remain available to watch there afterwards.

World Horse Welfare would like to thank the headline sponsor of the Conference, The Sir Peter O’Sullevan Charitable Trust, and the events other supporters, the Horseracing Betting Levy Board and MSD Animal Health.

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