GIBBONS, Alta. — Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC) has developed a course for horse haulers.
The inaugural edition was attended by 26 people, including commercial livestock transporters, in Gibbons, Alta. Apr. 10.
AFAC said the course is aimed at assuring the safe and humane handling of horses before, during and after transport. The course was developed and delivered by livestock handling expert Jennifer Woods.
It covers trailer design, animal behaviour and handling, handler safety, biosecurity, horse comfort during transport and accident response.
AFAC said the course was developed after it received calls from horse owners and stable workers who were concerned about transport practices.
“We, the livestock industry, must continue to provide education to the people in the field,” said Mikki Shatosky, course coordinator. “Livestock handlers and haulers must be open to new information and learn techniques that will ensure the safe relocation of the animals in their care. This course provides that information. If we can get people to think about the animals as individuals and consider their needs – then we have achieved something.”
The course has so far proven to be popular with drivers.
“It was a very interactive training session,” said Leita Lawrence, a trainer and instructor with Shenfield Ranch in Gibbons. “There were a lot of ‘Aha!’ moments in the training session. A few people said they wished they had this information before they bought their trailer.”
More info on the course is available at: www.afac.ab.ca/courses.htm or by calling Woods at 403-684-3008 or Lorna Baird of AFAC at 403-932-8050.
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