Introducing Horse Welfare Officers - for Clubs, Events & Activities April 2014
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Introducing Horse Welfare Officers - for Clubs, Events & Activities April 2014

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A presentation for horse related clubs, events and activity organisers, promoting the introduction of Horse Welfare Officers. Delivered to McLaren Districts Riding Club & Aldinga Bay Riding Club......

A presentation for horse related clubs, events and activity organisers, promoting the introduction of Horse Welfare Officers. Delivered to McLaren Districts Riding Club & Aldinga Bay Riding Club members, South Australia, 26 April 2014. Visit http://www.horsesa.asn.au/events/event/ for upcoming events.

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  • 1. Introduction to the role of Horse Welfare Officer for horse event & activity organisers Mc Laren Districts Riding Club, South Australia Horse SA 26 April 2014 www.horsesa.asn.au http://www.horsesa.asn.au/home/welfare/ horse-welfare-officers/
  • 2. Resources used for this workshop include: The Australian Horse Welfare & Well-being Toolkit produced by the Australian Horse Industry Council. Equine Emergency Rescue by MaryAnne Leighton, available through the Horse SA online store. And our mascot Riley the Rescue horse Julie Fiedler Horse SA Executive Officer 12 years. Project Coordinator: • The Australian Horse Welfare & Well-being Toolkit • The Australian Horse Welfare Protocol • Tips for the Care of Confined Horses Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 3. Workshop Aims 1. Why introduce Horse Welfare Officers to events/activities? 2. What are some the roles of the Horse Welfare Officer 3. Introduce a way of managing horse event incidents more safely 4. Handling deceased horses with dignity 5. What next for your activity group? Photos: Friends of Hampshire Fire & Rescue Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 4. Why introduce Horse Welfare Officers? Grow (and keep) the good “name” of your horse activity Continuous improvement in:  Horse welfare  Volunteer skill development  Rider/driver/handler education  Improve safety for everyone Image: Australian Horse Industry Council Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. A positive, pro-active job role to support activity organisers and participants
  • 5. A “Social Licence” to Operate • The wider community in which we live gives us a “licence” to use animals for sport, recreation, work and exhibition provided that the animals are well cared for. • Each and every one of us has a responsibility to maintain the “conditions” of the licence, as once lost, it is unlikely ever to be reissued. • We are all responsible for contributing to the continuous improvement in welfare within the wider horse community. Horse activity organisers are encouraged to be pro-active in seeking out good practice, educating participants and applying research findings. Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 6. It just doesn’t happen to us • Horse displays stress through poorly fitting equipment, adverse riding styles or activity environment • Horse collapses from heat exhaustion (competition, travel) or medical reason • Horse goes “down”/ or injured in relation to the activity, (which may also involve a rider) or non-competition areas e.g. float/wash bay • Horses are disadvantaged through unclear application of rules • Horse in trouble escaping from the grounds and gets into life- threatening situation (e.g. car vs. horse) • Horse is euthanased at event site for any number of reasons e.g. colic or requires on-site isolation for suspect disease (Strangles/Hendra) So we don’t need a plan, training or equipmentImage: Australian Horse Industry Council Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 7. Ideas for Promoting Horse Welfare at Events/Activities• Appointment of a horse welfare officer • Appointment of a veterinarian (or on call for smaller events) and paid accordingly. • Horse ambulance, trained volunteers & equipment is available/ sourced for each activity. Emergency plan available/known/practiced • Require a health status as part of event entry incl. vaccination status. Biosecurity plan avail/known/practiced • Welfare promoted to members, incl. in pre event/post event briefings, newsletters, appoint experts e.g. nutrition • Promote review of rules, policies from welfare viewpoint • Schedule education events for members/participants • Regularly review venue improvements (e.g. more shade) • Keep records, conduct research, document horse welfare continuous improvement program Photo: Australian Horse Industry Council Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 8. The Role of a Veterinarian An equine veterinarian has a key role to play in relation to horse health and welfare at an activity. A vet will work closely with a Horse Welfare Officer and Stewards, who will also have horse welfare as part of their role. However, your local vet is unlikely to have time to volunteer for the work that takes place outside of the day of the activity. E.g. • Contribute to non-veterinary aspects of emergency planning (biosecurity/equine incidents) • Participate in reviews of the rulebook, policies & procedures • Review venue and equipment, gather equipment for management of incidents • Coordinate dissemination of research/participate in research with club members • Organise, facilitate or conduct education and training sessions It is important for activity organisers to have in writing (i.e. pre-agreed) as to when a veterinarian can be engaged outside of regular competitions or emergencies. A budget and allocation of resources needs to be available e.g. • If a horse dies at an event • If a horse presents at a venue with suspicious health • To inspect a horse at the request of the Judge/Stewards The exact roles for HWO for each activity need to be defined and have focus. In the future, HWO with specialist roles might be called in as needed by organisations e.g. warm up/cool down or review of rules Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 9. A Horse Welfare Officer is there for the horses To provide information to the organising committee, participants/stakeholders on where improvements are working and help plan for further improvements. It is a dedicated, independent role, although many stewards/judges will have horse welfare as an aspect of their duties, just as riders do. Ask questions. A HWO does not have the power or role to discipline participants, change rules or other actions that are within the jurisdiction / duty of the organising committee or their appointed officials. In the future, organisations may employ Horse Welfare Officers, create organisational structures for HWO’s and update rulebooks or policies to give recognition to the role. The role of the HWO needs to be promoted to gain support by the participants, who will in turn then be the greatest advocates for continuous improvement. Horse Welfare Officers Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is
  • 10. DISCUSSION: What incidents are more likely to occur with your activity. Are there any emerging issues? Using a tarpaulin to assist in cooling a horse which collapsed in a float on a hot day. NSW Jan 2013. Screen dump from 10 min 45 sec mark of Dr Rebecca Gimenez presentation Horse SA International Large Animal Rescue Conference Nov 2013 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VagmZHzSrHk Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. What types of incidents would your horse activity potentially need to manage? Horse SA training workshop, March 2014
  • 11. Focus Area: Rules Event organisers can advocate “up the line” for - Changes to rules - Education of judges & officials - Participant information - More research Or review rules that may be now out of step, open to wide interpretation or new rules to be added to improve horse welfare. Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.Discussion: An example where a rule may affect horse welfare
  • 12. Focus Area: Emergency Planning • General emergencies (fire, flood, storm, lightening, hold up, chemical spill) • Equine Accident Management • Biosecurity Write- Practice – Train- Review Lots of help out there for general response & biosecurity, more needs to be done on equine accident response, which is now underway. Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. Discussion: Example of venue use as an Equine Evacuation Centre & potential for unattended, unidentified horses
  • 13. Focus Area: Policies & Procedures Activity organisers usually have a lot of control over policies & procedures relating to a club. e.g. • Policy for Hot Weather • Procedure for removal of a deceased horse from the venue • Instruction for disinfecting shared use horse equipment Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. Discussion: Hot weather policy, considerations around deceased horses at an activity
  • 14. Focus Area: Venue & Equipment • Regular inspections take place • Continuous improvement program to help plan out $, can be small things like checking gate latches fitted properly with no protrusions build up to shelters for day visiting horses, better cooling down options, improved arena surfaces, Smartphone Apps to use in the field • Asset Register (Insurance + working life of equipment + safety + matches intended use) • Refer to research, e.g. FEI Equine Surfaces Whitepaper • Apply rules/polices for use of venue & equipment Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 15. Focus Area: The Horses • Plan ahead for horse welfare & well-being • Prepare on the day, use checklists • Provide information to participants relating to the activity organisers expectations • Observe horses • Understand who has direct responsibilities for horses the whole time on the venue e.g. Owner, steward, judge and provide training + accountability • Record aspects related to welfare • Report on successes aim for incremental but continuous improvements • Celebrate success, reward effort in relation to horse welfare and participants Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 16. BREAK Advert: Horse Welfare Officer Workshop (with Riley the Rescue Horse) June 20/21 2014 Roseworthy Visit www.horsesa.asn.au for more events & education opportunities Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 17. This next section will discuss 1. If a horse dies or has to be euthanased at an event 2. Introduction to incident management When it all goes Pear-Shaped Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. Photos: Friends of Hampshire Fire & Rescue
  • 18. When it all goes pear-shaped………. Make the scene safe for volunteers to work in. At your activity - who “steps up” to start to control the incident? Managing the incident involves undertaking a dynamic risk assessment which may include - stop or divert the event/traffic/other horses - care for & manage people (humans come first!) - considerations for horse welfare - restrain a loose/uncontrolled horse (s) - manage spectators - remove or manage hazards PLAN the response CONDUCT the response DEBRIEF afterwards + records Discuss: Achieving an organised response with a few volunteers. Appointing roles as part of a plan. Know Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 19. Practical – Keep People Safe 1. Positioning people around a recumbent horse 2. Practice keeping spectators away using a lunge line 3. Screening 4. Discuss human behaviour when horses are distressed (rider/owner/spectator) 5. Discuss horse behaviour when stressed 6. Encouraging a horse that is recumbent, to stay that way Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 20. Practical - Basic Equipment Review bare minimum equipment For a small club: • Human PPE • 2 x Tarpaulins - for covering a horse & (strong) one for underneath • 4 or more tarpaulins for screening • 2 x 4WD straps with sewn loops • Spare strong rope • Towels • Walking cane • 1 lunge rein & 1 lunge whip • Horse float • Cleaning kit (biosecurity/human health) Rescue Glide Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. Remember to be aware of the limitations of your volunteers capabilities. Call in experts.
  • 21. Care for & Manage People This workshop has a focus on the horse, however, there needs to be people allocated to care for and manage other people. • Provide medical help for injured riders, officials, spectators • Consider emotional riders, strappers, family • Spectator control +/- Information to (Social) media Most clubs will by now have appointed “Member Protection Officers” (Human Welfare Officers) or an equivalent whose role it is to manage members requirements and be a part of the club or events practices in relation to child protection, grievance procedures etc. Remember that the new national WHS laws cover volunteer roles and now includes recognition of mental health. “Psychological First Aid” Red Cross booklet to help people useful to have a copy albeit designed for disaster management. Photos: Friends of Hampshire Fire & RescueHorse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 22. Euthanasia/ Death of a Horse at an Activity Video (WARNING: a horse is put to sleep) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqyF4E019uI • Provide screening • HWO can coordinate with Officials the collection information for reporting, arrange for taking of samples as per club policy, promote the handling of deceased horse with dignity • A competent horse handler, who follows instructions & wearing PPE, is required to assist the veterinarian. Equipment: a strong head collar and long leads/lunge reins, gloves • Prepare the area for the horse to lay after euthanasia. The horse may be able to be guided onto a glide or tarpaulin as it becomes recumbent. • Wait until the horse has been confirmed as deceased by the veterinarian before moving extra people back into the hot zone Tips (Page 27 Australian Horse Welfare & Well-being Toolkit) http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1393629/Tragedy-Queens-salute-Horse-run- gun-carriage.html 2011 Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 23. • Use empathetic verbal & non-verbal language, others may be distressed • Communication must be clear & concise to complete the management of the task in a timely manner • Handle the deceased horse’s limbs, head and body carefully. All parts of the horse to travel together. Do not leave horse unattended. • Keep the deceased horse covered with a tarpaulin, even behind the screen if possible/ required. Cover the eyes. • Placing personal belongings associated with the horse into a separate vehicle and taken back to float/home for rider, + rider if needed • Driving the horse ambulance at a sedate and considered speed, using the same driving skills as for live horses • Clearing & tidying the accident scene prior to taking down the screens • Maintain confidentiality at all times Handling Deceased Horses with Dignity Photo: Friends of Hampshire Fire & R Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 24. Separate reports are required for people and horses. Write the report asap after the incident, and within 24 hrs. Some events will have a template form to complete. Refer to template in toolkit. 1. Basic facts. The time, date and exact location of the incident Your name and role. Names of others who were present. Use a template form if available. 2. What happened? Keep facts to what actually did happen, not what you think might have happened. Who. What. When. How. Why. 3. Photographs: to record weather, surface conditions, hazards etc. may be added 4. Submit the report to the event organiser Photo: Friends of Hampshire Fire & Rescue Incident Reporting (People & Horses) Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 25. Understand capabilities of emergency services & your event/activity volunteer limitations Photo: Friends of Hampshire Fire & Rescue http://www.komonews.com/news/25666879.html http://rspcacymru.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/horse-11.jpg http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-18794841 http://www.theguardian.com/world/gallery/2012/feb/28/horse- freed-mud-in-pictures www.horsesa.asn.au Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. STOP. THINK AGAIN about sending untrained volunteers into dangerous situations. Get help.
  • 26. In the future? Horse Welfare Officers may have a wider range of tools and opportunities to promote, measure and report on welfare at horse activities, including.. - Use of non-invasive techniques to measure stress levels of horses at events - Participation in third party welfare audits - Increased use of scientific tools/Apps to gather information to support continuous improvement - National Horse Welfare Officer network & accredited training available In the future? Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 27. Where to from here for your activity? • Share this presentation • Appoint a Horse Welfare Officer (HWO) • Place horse welfare onto your meeting agenda, in every newsletter • Support the HWO to undertake training, link with research, other Officers • Write down some simple tasks to get things started e.g. review heat policy, venue inspection, education for members about signs of heat stress. • Arrange for volunteer/committee training, gap analysis. Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation.
  • 28. Thank you Horse SA PO Box 20 Wayville South Australia 5034 www.horsesa.asn.au E:horsesa@horsesa.asn.au Mob: 0402488306 Photos from the Large Animal Rescue Level 2 course June 2013 Horse SA Remember to check the Horse SA website for upcoming events! Horse SA www.horsesa.asn.au April 2014 NOTE: Information is a guide only. Seek professional advice to suit your situation. Equine Emergency Rescue available for purchase via Horse SA online store