• 29 October 2014

The Horse Trust launches new CPD courses on behaviour modification techniques for veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses

The Horse Trust is launching its new CPD programme with two one-day courses on equine behaviour modification techniques for the veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses.

The recent BEVA injury survey highlighted that equine vets are at an increased risk of injury compared to other civilian professions, including those working in the construction industry, prison service, and fire and rescue service. These shocking results demonstrate the need for training in methods that can be employed to help veterinary staff maintain safety when working with horses.

To help address this need, The Horse Trust will be running two CPD courses at its Home of Rest for Horses in Buckinghamshire on 25th November for veterinary surgeons and 26th November for veterinary nurses. The courses will develop the practitioner’s skills in handling challenging horses using the objective, evidence-based principles of equitation science.

Delegates will receive training from Gemma Pearson, Senior Clinical Training Scholar in Equine Practice at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, who has extensive experience in working with behavioural cases in the veterinary hospital and has helped to develop a training programme for staff and undergraduate veterinary students, incorporating equine ethology and learning theory, and the practical application of behavioural modification techniques in veterinary practice.

Gemma said “I am really excited about these CPD courses as they are the first to focus on handling skills for veterinary practitioners. The courses will give participants the ability to deal with horses more safely, and make dealing with challenging horses a less stressful experience for all involved”.

The courses will have a strong emphasis on hands-on practical sessions and delegates will be shown how behaviour modification techniques can be used to address behavioural problems commonly encountered in equine practice, for example needle/clipper shy horses or horses that won’t go into stocks/vehicles. Lisa Ashton, an equine behaviour consultant who runs clinics and workshops throughout the UK and Europe on how to embed the principles of equitation science into horse training, will be one of the trainers helping delegates to practice many of the techniques themselves.

Liane Preshaw, Welfare Development Manager at The Horse Trust and organiser of the courses, said “We feel it’s vitally important that veterinary practitioners are given access to horse handling training based on the principles of equitation science, which will not only help to safeguard horse welfare and protect veterinary staff and owners, but may also enable them to develop a better understanding of how behavioural problems can develop”.

Each course will be limited to 14 delegates to maximise the output from the practical sessions, so early booking is advised. The courses are sponsored by Ceva Animal Health, who will have representatives at the courses to discuss their new product, ConfidenceEQ.


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