Racehorse Health & Welfare Research & Education Program

ACER helped Equine Guelph with their research education program on racehorse health and welfare. The project helped Equine Guelph build on their foundation to apply its expertise and skills in the areas of research and education on racehorse health and welfare in Ontario.

The project consisted of multiple phases including:

  • Pre-survey data collection (interviews with veterinarians, focus groups with trainers and grooms, and stable visits)
  • Ontario horse racing industry survey (a comprehensive survey to assess sector-specific opinions/perceptions on horse injuries and disease, as well as best methods of reaching and training each audience segment on this subject matter)
  • Strategic plan development for 2017-2018 Horse Racing Education Program

Pilot Program Roll-out and Post-Assessment (comprehensive fire prevention program based on the strategic plan and a post-assessment which involved 25 interviews with pilot program participants).

The survey (phase 2) was a large component of this project. It sought to investigate current perceptions and gaps in communication, education, and information, as well as best methods of reaching and training each audience segment. It also investigated perceived common injuries and diseases by sector, its impact, and reasons for and number of horses leaving racing. And finally, the survey assessed current management practices and challenges relating to fire prevention and safety at horse racing training facilities

The online survey was comprised of 66 questions total and was completed by 654 respondents. Results of the survey provided detailed information about demographics of respondents, general industry concerns, horse injuries and sickness/disease, horse well-being/welfare, fire prevention/emergency preparedness, and communication and education preferences. ACER analyzed and summarized these findings and supported Equine Guelph in interpreting these results to create an actionable plan and future pilot projects to address the concerns and gaps identified.

For more information on the resource toolkit we prepared, check out:

Equine Guelph Infection Control Resources


Do you have a special scientific communication project you’re looking for advice on? Need a website or educational toolkit built to deliver your messages? Give us a shout at info@acerconsult.ca and we’ll be happy to discuss how we can support your next project!



Equine Guelph

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