Next Article in Journal
Seaweed and Seaweed Bioactives for Mitigation of Enteric Methane: Challenges and Opportunities
Previous Article in Journal
Effect of Rumen Protected Methionine and α-Tocopherol on Growth Performance, Carcass Characteristics, and Meat Composition of Late Fattening Hanwoo Steer in High-Temperature Seasons
Article

Associations between Owners’ Reports of Unwanted Ridden Behaviour and In-Hand Behaviour in Horses

1
Sydney School of Veterinary Science, Faculty of Science, University of Sydney, Camperdown, NSW 2006, Australia
2
School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Sydney, Camperdown, NSW 2006, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2020, 10(12), 2431; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10122431
Received: 16 November 2020 / Revised: 13 December 2020 / Accepted: 14 December 2020 / Published: 18 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Human-Animal Interactions, Animal Behaviour and Emotion)
Dangerous ridden behaviour in horses, such as bolting, rearing and bucking, are common and may reflect various aspects of the horses’ immediate experience, history and health. They can have a major impact on human safety and horse welfare because of the common misunderstandings of unwelcome behaviour in horses and popular treatments for so-called problem horses. The current study aimed to identify any in-hand behaviours associated with these dangerous ridden behaviours evaluated based on responses (n = 1584) to the Equine Behaviour Assessment and Research Questionnaire (E-BARQ). Declining reports of bolting were associated with decreasing problems loading horses onto transporters, increasing social confidence with other horses and other animals, improved leading behaviour and increased tolerance of restraint. Declining reports of rearing were associated with decreasing loading problems, increasing social confidence with other animals and increasing tolerance of restraint. Declining reports of bucking were associated with decreasing loading problems and increasing social confidence with horses and other animals, improved leading behaviour, increasing tolerance of restraint and increasing tolerance of head handling (when bridling/haltering). Findings from the current study could help riders and trainers predict dangerous ridden behaviour before they manifest fully, allowing for remediation that avoids the escalation of force in the training of misunderstood horses and thus improving safety and welfare for both horses and riders.
An evidence-based understanding of dangerous or unwelcome behaviour in horses would greatly benefit both horses and humans who interact with them. Using owner-reported data from the Equine Behaviour Assessment and Research Questionnaire (E-BARQ), the current study investigated in-hand behaviours associated with dangerous or unwelcome ridden behaviours, notably bolting, rearing and bucking. Respondents (n = 1584) to the ridden horse section of the E-BARQ answered 42 demographic questions, followed by 268 behavioural items. Parallel analysis was conducted to group individual behaviours into rotated components to create independent and dependent indices. Multivariable general linear modelling and ordinal logistic regression were used to identify behaviours associated with bolting, rearing and bucking. Results revealed that safety-from-bolt increased as social confidence with horses (Odds ratio (OR) = 1.06; 95% confidence interval (cf = 1.02–1.09) and other animals (OR = 1.08; cf = 1.03–1.12), compliance in-hand (OR = 1.10; cf = 1.06–1.16) and tolerance of restraint (OR = 1.05; cf = 1.0–1.11) increased; and decreased as loading problems (OR = 0.95; cf = 0.92–0.99) increased. Safety-from-rear increased as tolerance of restraint (OR = 1.07; cf = 1.02–1.12) and social confidence with other animals (OR = 1.05; cf = 1.01–1.09) increased; and decreased as loading problems (OR = 0.94; cf = 0.91–0.98) increased. Safety-from-buck increased as social confidence with horses (b-value = 0.011, p < 0.001) and other animals (b-value = 0.010, p = 0.002), compliance in-hand (b-value = 0.015, p < 0.001), tolerance of restraint (b-value = 0.009, p = 0.027) and tolerance of haltering/bridling (b-value = 0.016, p = 0.010) increased, and it decreased as loading problems increased (b-value = −0.011, p < 0.001). By revealing, for the first time, that specific behaviours on the ground are associated with particular responses in the same horses when ridden, this study advances equitation science considerably. Identification of risk factors for dangerous behaviour while under saddle can improve safety for horses and riders and highlights the importance of effective and humane in-hand training. View Full-Text
Keywords: conflict behaviour; bolting; rearing; bucking; equitation science; E-BARQ conflict behaviour; bolting; rearing; bucking; equitation science; E-BARQ
MDPI and ACS Style

Romness, N.; Fenner, K.; McKenzie, J.; Anzulewicz, A.; Burattini, B.; Wilson, B.; McGreevy, P. Associations between Owners’ Reports of Unwanted Ridden Behaviour and In-Hand Behaviour in Horses. Animals 2020, 10, 2431. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10122431

AMA Style

Romness N, Fenner K, McKenzie J, Anzulewicz A, Burattini B, Wilson B, McGreevy P. Associations between Owners’ Reports of Unwanted Ridden Behaviour and In-Hand Behaviour in Horses. Animals. 2020; 10(12):2431. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10122431

Chicago/Turabian Style

Romness, Nicole; Fenner, Kate; McKenzie, Jessica; Anzulewicz, Ashley; Burattini, Bibiana; Wilson, Bethany; McGreevy, Paul. 2020. "Associations between Owners’ Reports of Unwanted Ridden Behaviour and In-Hand Behaviour in Horses" Animals 10, no. 12: 2431. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10122431

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop