You are here: Home / Journal Articles / Diversity in horse enthusiasts with respect to horse welfare: an explorative study / About

Diversity in horse enthusiasts with respect to horse welfare: an explorative study

By E. K. Visser, E. E. C. van Wijk-Jansen

View Resource (HTM)

Licensed under

Category Journal Articles
Abstract

A reduced level of welfare of horses is related to management factors such as low forage feeding, short feeding time, social isolation, and lack of unrestrained exercise. It has been assumed that welfare problems can be reduced and/or partly prevented by improving the knowledge and skills of horse enthusiasts. It has also been assumed that to improve the provision of information to horse enthusiasts, it is important to explore and gain more insight into horse enthusiasts' motives, knowledge, and behavior. The aim of this exploratory study was to identify the diversity of horse enthusiasts in the Netherlands, with respect to the way they search and find out information, their emotional involvement with horses, and their attitude, their knowledge, and daily practices with regard to equine welfare. A Web-based survey using a 30-item questionnaire resulted in 4,267 respondents. Most respondents (84.6%) were female; the average age of the respondents was 34.2 (13.5) years. More than half of the respondents (64.5%) believed that there were welfare problems throughout the whole horse industry. The most important reported source for information was the personal contact with other horse enthusiasts (82.8%), with veterinarians (74.5%), and with farriers (69.5%). It is, therefore, recommended that to disseminate relevant knowledge on equine welfare, particular attention should be paid to the acquisition and dissemination skills within the education programs of veterinarians and farriers. Although most respondents were aware of the issues that can compromise welfare, their knowledge did not always result in appropriate practices. Furthermore, a cluster analysis showed that horse enthusiasts can be categorized into 4 clusters from the way they search and find out information, their emotional involvement with horses, and their attitude, their knowledge, and daily practices with regard to the welfare of horses. To improve the provision of information to horse enthusiasts, it is recommended that the information provision to horse enthusiasts is organized around these 4 clusters of horse enthusiasts.

Publication Title Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research
Volume 7
Issue 5
Pages 295-304
ISBN/ISSN 1558-7878
DOI 10.1016/j.jveb.2011.10.007
Language English
Author Address Wageningen University and Research Centre, Livestock Research, Edelhertweg 15, 8219 PH Lelystad, Netherlands.kathalijne.visser@wur.nl
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

Tags
  1. Animal behavior
  2. Animal nutrition
  3. Animals
  4. Anthropology
  5. Attitudes
  6. Crops
  7. Developed countries
  8. Documentation
  9. Education
  10. Emotions
  11. Europe
  12. Exercise
  13. Feeding
  14. Fodder
  15. Foraging
  16. Horses
  17. Internet
  18. Mammals
  19. Netherlands
  20. OECD countries
  21. peer-reviewed
  22. Questionnaires
  23. Social psychology and social anthropology
  24. training
  25. ungulates
  26. Union Countries
  27. vertebrates
  28. Veterinarians
Badges
  1. peer-reviewed