Rescue & Welfare

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Demand for donkey hides, used to make ejiao, has built a lucrative trade industry, endangering the livelihoods of those who rely on them - Half the world’s donkey population could be wiped out in the next five years, as millions are slaughtered to meet the rising demand for “ejiao,” a gelatin-based traditional Chinese medicine derived from boiling the hides of donkeys. Believed to improve blood circulation and treat conditions like anemia, infertility, and impotence, ejiao is found in powders, tonics, cosmetics, and even food products.

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Source: Best Horse Practices | Season 2, Episode 4 

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Research shows that wells dug by feral donkeys and horses benefit other species and the environment. Erick Lundgren and colleagues studied the behaviour of feral equids in the Sonoran Desert in the Southwestern United States. They found that feral horses and donkeys dig their own wells, which are sometimes up to two metres deep. The wells provide benefits for other species and lead to an increase in biodiversity in the surrounding area.

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Horse owners are familiar with the tragic pictures shared on social media of the emaciated horse rescued by the authorities, or the one that could not be saved due to its poor condition. Malnourished horses are a reality even in our affluent Western world. Sometimes these horses are the result of well-intentioned people trying to “save” unwanted horses, only to find they are unable to do so because of cost or scarcity of feed.

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Canadian breeders producing quality foals - North American horse owners may not be aware that Canada is the home of Linwood Ranch, an equine breeding facility that has generated peer reviewed research in recent years on subjects such as equine behaviour, equine welfare, stall design, and the requirements for lying down time for healthy horses. Linwood Ranch is a PMU or “pregnant mare urine” ranch in Manitoba, and is also where active research is conducted on many equine welfare issues affecting all of our horses.

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What makes a deed good? Is it good intentions or is it good results? Or are both elements required for a deed to qualify as good? When it comes to the “wildies” (loose, wild, and feral horses), some people turned their good intentions into action by putting out feed for the horses wintering on the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains.

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University of Calgary Vet Med researchers observed the behaviour of horses used in rodeos over three years - Rodeo is more than just a sport, especially in Alberta. Rodeo events encompass core skills that those working with livestock traditionally needed in order to safely and effectively manage their animals day-to-day. Many of the skills — including staying on the back of an untrained horse — are still important today.

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