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Animals 2016, 6(3), 16; doi:10.3390/ani6030016

Reconciling Horse Welfare, Worker Safety, and Public Expectations: Horse Event Incident Management Systems in Australia

Faculty of Law, Education, Business and Arts, Charles Darwin University, Casuarina NT 0810, Australia
Faculty of Veterinary Science, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Kirrilly Thompson
Received: 4 November 2015 / Revised: 6 February 2016 / Accepted: 16 February 2016 / Published: 24 February 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Horses and Risk)
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Human-horse interactions have a rich tradition and can be highly rewarding, particularly within sport and recreation pursuits, but they can also be dangerous or even life-threatening. In parallel, sport and recreation pursuits involving animals, including horses, are facing an increased level of public scrutiny in relation to the use of animals for these purposes. However, the challenge lies with event organisers to reconcile the expectations of the public, the need to meet legal requirements to reduce or eliminate risks to paid and volunteer workers, and address horse welfare. In this article we explore incident management at horse events as an example of a situation where volunteers and horses can be placed at risk during a rescue. We introduce large animal rescue skills as a solution to improving worker safety and improving horse welfare outcomes. Whilst there are government and horse industry initiatives to improve safety and address animal welfare, there remains a pressing need to invest in a strong communication plan which will improve the safety of workplaces in which humans and horses interact. View Full-Text
Keywords: horse; risk; safety; injury; accident; management; mitigation; behaviour change horse; risk; safety; injury; accident; management; mitigation; behaviour change

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Fiedler, J.M.; McGreevy, P.D. Reconciling Horse Welfare, Worker Safety, and Public Expectations: Horse Event Incident Management Systems in Australia. Animals 2016, 6, 16.

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