March 2012

By: Jennifer Woods

Stress: A mentally or emotionally disruptive or upsetting condition occurring in response to adverse external influences and capable of affecting physical health.

Most people do not realize how stressful transportation can be for even the most seasoned traveling equine. The possible affects of stress on horses during transport include colic, diarrhea, laminitis, shipping fever, injury, performance impediment, weight loss, dehydration, disease or even death. Through awareness of the key transport stressors, horse owners and caregivers can alleviate stress levels and the adverse affects.

Transport stressors include:
Changes in temperature, humidity, air qualityatrailer_ventilationMixing with unfamiliar animals
Confinement in unfamiliar places
Unfamiliar movement underfoot
Climbing and descending
Physical demands
Disrupted feed patterns
Restricted movement


The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) looks forward to receiving feedback from the interested parties on the proposal for a legislative framework for traceability.

Read the legislative framework here.

Comments need to be received by May 3 2012.

The National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) is conducting a second survey to gain further stakeholder input as it revises Canada’s official Equine Code of Practice which serves as our national understanding of equine care requirements and recommended best practices.

NFACC is overseeing a multi-year project to renew the Codes of Practice for several farm animal species, including equine. Each species has a lead organization responsible for facilitating their individual Code’s development.  For equine, it’s Equine Canada.

The Equine Code of Practice will be scientifically informed, practical, and reflect societal expectations for farm animal care thanks to a Code Development Committee which brings together a broad range of expertise and industry knowledge. The Committee is also seeking stakeholder input through national surveys. This survey is the second to be conducted for equine.


Students at the University of Calgary faculty of Veterinary Medicine (UCVM) now have the use of three full-size horse simulators. According to a statement from UCVM, they are the only models of their kind in the world.aUCVM_equine_simulator

With added funding from Equine Foundation of Canada (EFC), the models now not only help students learn techniques such as rectal palpation and abdominal (belly) taps, but also a wide range of other procedures. Students practice on the simulators before moving on to live horses.



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