World Horse Welfare help the experts get prepared for a disease outbreak


World Horse Welfare has been working with the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA) to provide training to their staff on how they could be best prepared for an equine disease outbreak in the UK.


The charity’s Deputy Head of UK Welfare Samantha Chubbock, Campaigns Officer Hannah Westen and a team from Hall Farm Rescue and Rehoming Centre successfully carried out lectures and practical demonstrations to 75 veterinary and technical staff from the AHVLA over two days.

The sessions were held at World Horse Welfare’s Hall Farm Rescue and Rehoming Centre in Snetterton, Norfolk on Friday 9 December and Monday 12 December. During the lectures the officers learnt about the following subjects: -

• The horse industry in the UK

• Horse markings and passports

• The location of notifiable diseases around the world

• The symptoms of notifiable diseases

The practical sessions covered the following topics: -

• General handling of horses

• Health checks

• The practical side of passports and identification

• Loading and transportation of horses.

The aim of the events were to highlight any specific problems an equine disease outbreak would pose to the AHVLA and how our organisations could work together to find solutions. World Horse Welfare’s Samantha Chubbock commented by saying: “We were extremely pleased to be asked to carry out the training and received very positive feedback from those who took part.

“There is a real difference regarding the movement of horses, and the regulations in place for them, compared to animals within the agricultural industry. We hope we have clearly set out those differences and hope to work in collaboration with the AHVLA again in the future.”

Technical Team Leader at the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency Nichola Clark said: “We felt that working with World Horse Welfare would be beneficial to our staff as the charity has a great deal of knowledge and expertise regarding the equine industry. In the past we have mainly dealt with farm stock when there has been a disease outbreak in the UK, therefore the aim was to allow us to identify any problems and so be better prepared in the event of an outbreak concerning the equine industry.

“The events were enormously successful as I have received excellent feedback from everybody who took part, regardless of their experience with horses, and we certainly wish to continue to work with external stakeholders such as World Horse Welfare on future projects.”


For more information and advice on disease prevention visit our advice section or watch the film below.