The Donkey Sanctuary is celebrating the launch of a new set of guidelines to protect equines from suffering the effects of dehydration during transportation.
Working together, The Donkey Sanctuary and a group of industry experts have produced a set of practical guidelines to aid anyone involved in the transportation of equines. Thousands of equines are transported each year throughout Europe for a variety of reasons many of whom will have never or rarely travelled in a vehicle before. The aim of these guidelines is to assist users in understanding; the effects of road transportation on the watering needs of equines, the steps necessary to prevent dehydration, and associated problems and the possible signs of dehydration and the action required if such signs occur.
Collaborating with relevant bodies has allowed years of research to be assembled in order to create a set of guidelines that are practical and effective. By highlighting the information that has been collected in a report such as this, avoidance of equines having to suffer during the process of transportation is achievable. Key points from European legislation have also been included in the report to allow people to understand their duties to these animals by law.
Andy Foxcroft, Director of Care and Welfare says: “Transportation is clearly a delicate process and a risk for the welfare of all equines – horses, ponies, donkeys, etc. By highlighting the effects, steps of prevention and signs of dehydration, unnecessary stress and suffering can be reduced. People transporting equines should be aware of their duty of care during this process”.
The new guidelines reveal dehydration can lead to aggressive behaviour, exhaustion and colic. Water is essential for life. Equines must be fully hydrated before travelling to help prevent the development of health and welfare problems.
From this report recommendations have been made to assist anyone transporting equines before, during and after the journey. The guidelines aim to reduce the amount of suffering that equines in transit can face and will hopefully mean more animals arrive at their destinations in much better condition. These guidelines are both practical and effective and should be seriously considered by anyone within the equine industry.
The report has been produced as a collaboration between World Horse Welfare, FVE, FEEVA, Animal Transportation Association, Animals' Angels and The Donkey Sanctuary.
Download the guidelines by clicking the attachment below.