Uncovering the effect of cost of living crisis on those caring for horses

World Horse Welfare is coordinating this year’s research and calling on horse keepers around the UK to take a short survey.

Posted on 18/01/2024

Uncovering the effect of cost of living crisis on those caring for horses

By taking part in a short, free SURVEY, anyone who cares for horses will be able contribute to an understanding of how increased costs are affecting their ability to care for their animals, and this information will feed into the development of targeted support for those most in need and help prevent welfare issues arising.

“For those of us at the coalface of dealing with cases where individuals are unable to care for their horses because they cannot meet their needs financially, it is imperative for us to understand if the situation has worsened for horse owners and keepers over the past 12 months? We know from last year’s research that many owners were just about coping, and all possible cost savings had already been made, but that left little room for a further squeeze on purses. This year’s follow-on survey aims to show whether things have stabilised, improved or deteriorated, allowing us to plan and act accordingly. We really hope as many horse owners as possible engage with the research and complete the survey, regardless of whether or not they were involved in last year’s project.”

Education Officer, Rebecca Boulert

The 2023 survey had around 8,000 responses, a summary of which can be found HERE and the organisers of the follow up research, all members of the National Equine Welfare Committee (NEWC) hope that a similar number will participate this year.  The survey was developed by World Horse Welfare with support from NEWC partner organisations Redwings, Blue Cross, The British Horse Society, Bransby Horses and Oak Tree Animals Charity.  

A tailored version of the survey targeting charities and other equestrian rescue centres will run concurrently to find out how the continuing cost of living crisis is affecting these types of organisations. Those involved will be contacted directly by NEWC and asked to take part.

The anonymised results will be made publicly available to highlight any challenges and concerns that horse owners are facing, and their potential impact on equine welfare.

The results will be shared with the UK Government, Devolved Administrations, and local authorities to help inform their understanding of the situation as well as policy decisions, including potential financial support to those most in need.

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