RZSS Highland Wildlife Park in collaboration with Touching Wild with Bonny Mealand and Equine International with Dr Emily Kieson are delighted to be able to offer this groundbreaking workshop to zookeepers.
Following on from the BIAZA award for “Using the Principles of Equine Ethology and Learning Theory to Improve Care of Takhi (Equus przewalskii)” Bonny and the staff at the park are keen to share their successful handling methods with other keepers of wild equines. Emily is eager to provide insight into the science and research that support this new approach to animal handling.
This three-day workshop blends the science of equine behaviour with tried and tested practical methods. The aim is to provide you with the knowledge and skills which build on your own experience and deepen your understanding of the equines in your care.
DAY 1 Introducing the Takhi
The breed and the individuals at RZSS HWP. A tour of the Park - Escorted by keepers you will hear about the amazing work of the HWP and some of the projects they support. You will also get to meet some of the individuals of the Takhi herd and observe their handling practices. The science of Equine Behaviour and Training.
DAY 2 The Art of Observation
A deeper look into equine behaviour and body language. Takhi Time - a second visit to the herd. Training Frameworks and Key Concepts - ideas and examples to help you tailor make an appropriate system for your situation. Best Foot Forward - the basics of hoof anatomy and health including a look into laminitis.
DAY 3 Equine Lower Leg Dissection (Optional)
Bonny qualified as an Equine Podiatrist In 2005 and has run her ‘Whole Horse’ hoof care business since then. Specialising in working with wild, untouched, free-living and difficult to handle equines. Finding low stress ways to handle them that also builds trust is the foundation of her work. Her award-winning work with the Takhi at RZSS Highland Wildlife Park has meant that unrestrained and low stress handling is possible whenever needed by the park staff. Bonny is currently an enthusiastic MSc student of Equine Science at the Dick Vet (the University of Edinburgh) alongside studying Plains Zebra (Equus Quagga) in Zimbabwe and running workshops across the world.
Emily holds a PhD in Comparative Psychology, a MS in Psychology, and a graduate degree in Equine Science. Her research focuses on equine behavioural psychology, equine welfare, and horse-human interactions Her current research focuses on equine affiliative behaviours to study how horses create and maintain social bonds and how those can overlap with human affiliative behaviours to create authentic lasting friendships between horses and humans.
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