ISES fredag 19 juli
Riktigt svettig joggingrunda, verkar bli en ändå varmare dag, utlovat 37 grader. Aktade mig för den supersalta philadelphiaosten i frukostmatsalen, där det även bjöds alla slags kladdiga bullar. Scrambled eggs och färsk fruktsallad vettigaste val. Jo, det är mycket salt i maten i den här delen av landet, kommenterade en delegat.
Gårdagens bankett hölls på den vackra kapplöpningsbanan Fairfield med massor av mark som användes till hagar och banor för fälttävlan, hoppning och dressyr. Renoverad lada kunde varit jättemysig i annan temperatur, men utan luftkonditionering satt alla och dröp och kippade efter andan. Utom banans chef, som entusiastiskt rabblade hästar, tränare och jockeyer i trekvart, tills han blev taktfullt tackad för all informationen. Väldigt generöst gav han var och en av oss en tjusigt redigerad bok om en av banans legender, Barbaro. Banan låg i Maryland (vi fick stora Maryland cookies till efterrätt!), bara några kilometer från campus, delstaterna är inte stora här.
Plenarföreläsning - Jan Ladewig - The other 23 hours of the day
We need to change horse-keeping to loose housing systems if we want to improve the welfare of horses. Milk producers did it voluntarily, as cows have a wonderful way of showing what they like, they give more milk.
Vet students found that horses on pasture had no more lesions than horses kept indoors. 70 percent had lesions from blankets.
Locomotion in horses shows that feral horses move 17,9 kms a day, horses on pasture 7,5 kms a day.
Social contact is needed for allogrooming (mutual grooming). To scratch each other strengthens the bonding between individuals and lowers the heart rate. Grooming spots are on the withers and other torso parts, if the horse wears a rug or blanket grooming is less often carried out. Do you think a horse would roll as much and end it with a buck if he had a blanket on? We don't know, there are no studies.
Poor air quality, un-physiological patterns of locomotion, un-physiological eating patterns all follow indoor stabling. But if you have control over a situation, you are much less prone to stresses.
Suggestions for improved housing: Keeping a horse in an individual paddock for a few hours every day is not good enough. It is not good enough to keep young horses in sex homogenous groups. Horses need to learn how to solve conflict situations without aggression. Not only zoo animals need environment enrichments. Tree branches, rolling spots etc can be used to keep the pasture more interesting.
Animals that are used to meeting new individuals can deal with new aquaintances better without aggression.
A change to group housing will solve some of the problems, but also give new problems, that is the experience from cows and pigs.
Comment from the audience: Experience of mustangs born in captivity being much harder to train than mustangs born in a herd, had not learnt how to give and take.
Jan L: You also always have exceptions. When you make studies you always get the individual who doesn't fit into the group. It is where the management comes in.
Audience: We do group housing and consistently take horses out for riding and shows and put them back in the herd again, and we do not have problems.
Other audience: We have the same, but some individuals that can give trouble, but they would probably be troublesome in other ways of keeping, too.
Jan L: I am not saying this is easy, but you can go together and have communal horse-keeping - to a question of the fact that many people only have one horse - like on the common lands in New Forest, England.
Machteld van Dierendonck & Tessa Vogel van Vreeswijk - Free moving equine stable with automatic roughage feeding system moving in between a group: the effect of increasing from 3 to 6 feeding runs
A significant decrease of the total aggression behaviours was noted, also in the lower intensity, like bite threat instead of chasing. Time budget in eating showed resting time went up and feeding time down during 6 feeding times. Probably this is because horses learn food comes often, they will not miss out. The horses' body condition score stayed the same.
Kathryn Holcomb et al - Do horses benefit from provision of shade in hot, sunny weather, and do they prefer it?
Horses standing in 100 percent sun stood near the water more than horses in 100 percent shade. They also had higher temperature, sweating and breathing frequency.
Horses in pens with 50 percent shade did not have differences over the day in physiology records, so these horses used the shade when needed.
Barabara Paladina et al - T-Touch on behaviour of saddle horses
During T-Touch (Tellington awareness method) self-grooming, relaxing of the neck and licking were significantly higher than in massage and petting situations. Licking behaviour was higher at rest, but the horses in the study were both self-grooming and neck-relaxing more when T-Touched than at rest.
Alexali Brubaker and Jeannine Berger et al - Novelty-seeking and object play behaviour in adult domestic horses
The study was using objects the horses could move or pick up. Startle was rare, thoroughbreds did not startle more than quarter horses. Type of object was more significant; a saucer lid created more startles than a ball or a cube. The horses that did startle walked up quicker towards the object before they startled than the ones that did not. There was no gender effect and 30 of the 46 horses in the study never startled. Horses that were quicker to approach an object were also quicker to approach a person.
How do we measure play? We collapsed all behaviours together, but how does it become play? The study defined play to investigating something during 13 seconds and over, as there was a clear gap between performing a behaviour for less and more than 13 seconds. The cube was made safe by being able to dismantle it, and it seemed like the horses enjoyed more taking the cube apart than playing with the other objects. A surprising finding was that mares played as much as geldings, as we do hear that mares do not play as much.
Marc Pierard et al - The use of temperament tests for the evaluation of police horses
The measured behaviours were an umbrella falling down, going over a wooden bridge and a tarp, socializing with a person and another horse.
None of the behaviours was strongly correlated with age or seniority. It did not quite work out to create a half hour test and then just judge if a horse is suitable for police work or not, different behaviours were not always correlated. F ex the blue tarp and the wooden bridge were not very correlated. Heart rate was not very different between the horses that were presumed being towards suited bad and good.
Plenary speech - Andrew McLean et al - Aroused, attachment and affective state
Caress can be used as a primary reinforcer; good boy + wither caress, one of them is not necesserily replacing the other.
Attachment theory; Harlow's pioneering studies on Rhesus monkeys. Food does not provide basis for attachment, instead clear communication and a soothing tactile contact (attachment theory by Bowlby and Ainsworth). We can escape, fight, ignore and secure. Horse-human attachment improves human health, but for the horse? They are social, horses may choose humans when insecure. We have the umbrella experiment where horse HR followed human's, grooming/massage and other touch therapies.
Future practice and research, weaning protocols, group housing, fundamental credo in pony clubs, federations, trainers and coaches. Research; can we soothe horses? Do horses in conflict allogroom at different rates? Variables in attachment styles of humans and horses. Stranger situation?
Continued by Paul McGreevy
To avoid flight responses is the 7th ISES principle. We want a positive affective state. Attachment, arousal, affective state
Hight arousal - fearful, anxious, excited, happy.
Low arousal, negative and positive respectively - sad, depressed, relaxed, calm.
The best trainers are going to be able to easily place a horse in any of these parts.
In almost all cases negative reinforcement (pressure taken away) is the best way to make a horse move forward, with a horse in an alert mood.
Positive reinforcement on a horse in a positive mood.
People say it is only proof of what we already know, but it is often just slightly different from what we thought we knew.
Sabrina Briefer et al - who's in a better mood? Comparison of behavioural indicators in horses trained with negative or positive reinforcement
To do an assessment of temperament, the study carried out basic exercises, with a clicker for the PR horses and gradual pressure which was taken away as soon as the expected response was shown for the NR horses.
Physiologically there were no differences in heart rate, skin temperature or other indicators. Behavioural differences were more significant, with more positive emotions when trained with positive reinforcement. Motivating body tension is promising for the positive reinforcement method, while horses trained with negative reinforcement showed more irritated body tension. The PR horses searched more contact with the trainer, the NR horses had a rather neutral and indifferent attitude.
Sabrina Briefer et al - Assessment of horse optimism following negative or positive reinforcement
A cognitive bias, is the glass half full or half empty? An optimistic mare trots up directly to a bucket, a pessimistic trots up but turns away. This was repeated more quickly on second day. Negative reinforcement induced positive behaviour when tests stop.
Paul McGreevy - The force of whip impact delivered by jockeys using forehand and backhand strides
Forehand/like a tennis racket, backhand/like a ski-pole. A plastic horse with electrodes was used. When jockeys struck with their dominant hand, they used more force with their backhand. Other ways of striking were more at random, no pattern shown. The three A's (Awareness, Acceptance, Action?) becomes a four, the ability for the animal to respond.
Catherine Watkins & Darcy Murphy - Evaluation of whip use and prevalence in elite and non-elite show jumpers
Watching a lot of showjumping, 458 rounds at affiliated competitions. None elite riders were statistically more likely to use the whip. Whip use according to the British rule book is only regarded as carried out when one hand is off the reins, and using a whip holding the reins with both hands is by far the most frequent whip use, as it doesn't count as whip use. Pony Club rules does not mention whip use, but spurs are more regulated.
Jan Ladewig: There are other ways of getting a horse over a fence.
Audience, show jumper: You always get a black mark if the whip is used more than three times. Affiliated show jumping as completely different from unaffiliated.
Christina Bierke et al - A comparison of negative and positive reinforcement in naive horses
The novel object being a stock trailer parked by the pasture, so there was no separation from the herd mates. The positive reinforcement was grain, given when the horse took a step towards the trailer. negative reinforcement a dressage whip, tapping onto the horse's hindquarters, released when the horse took a step forward.
All but one horse went into the trailer within set time. Negative reinforcement horses took more sidesteps, seeking to get away. Positive reinforcement horses showed a more investigative behaviour, stretching their necks forward and sniffing. There was no effect on completion time between the two groups, but more avoidance in the negative reinforcement horses, however no change in heart rate.
Olivia Turner - Exploring clicker training: A method of positive reinforcement to improve the welfare of horse training
The sound of the clicker is sharp and processed in the amygdala with immediate result. The study used 30 riding school horses. The horses were conditioned to the clicker with 5-10 seconds per click. The proposed time guide was 10-15 minutes.
The results showed that horses undergo different learning processes, suggesting some horses benefit from clicker training more than others. Food followed click through the whole study.
Katrina Merkies et al - Does the human voice have a calming effect on horses?
The voices used were pleasant high and low, stern high and low. Heart rate increased in the presence of a human when the voice was played, and did not when no human was present. The horse's ears were not orientated in the direction of only voice, as opposed to when a human was present. When the voice was pleasant, the horse also turned its face towards the human.
Marc Pierard & Maaike Vincke - Does groundwork according to learning theory affect unwanted behaviour of riding school horses during regular lessons?
The study was carried out with in-hand training for about 20 minutes, using negative and positive reinforcement, of gradual training of basic responses ex stop, backward, go etc.
The worse behaviours disappeared, tail swishing decreased from 26 to 7 times per hour. Six to nine sessions were spent per horse, in treal life situations with riding school going on as usual. An overall improvement was noted; although the riding school not being so organized, with a dog running around in arena, a big child rein-jabbing on a sensitive pony, some instructors thought it was rubbish etc, 5 of the 8 horses in the study showed a clear decrease in unwanted behaviours during lessons.
Matsalen på campus var synnerligen skolmatsalsliknande, men frukosten inte helt efter europeiska mått – fet, salt, söt och kladdig. Dock fanns frukt.
Tanken gick till retrostället Katie's, som serverade frukosten i Philadelphia.
Visst inbjöd campus till joggingturer och promenader, men bara tidigt på morgonen. Hög värme och dito luftfuktighet höll oss inomhus i luftkonditionerade lokaler. UD för University of Delaware.
Vi fick allihop en vacker inbunden bok om banans store son Barbaro, vid konferensmiddagen på Farifields kapplöpningsbana.
Det knusslades inte med virke eller färg till hästhagarna i Delaware.
Hm, ännu en mörk ppt-bild som jag borde fräst till i Photoshop. Handlar om minskad aggressivitet när hästar får hö oftare.
Och här handlar det om hastiga reaktioner, som kan ge oönskade effekter.
Ännu en goodie – tur jag inte reste med enbart handbagage den här gången – låg i konferensväskan. Författaren Janet del Castillo tränar galoppörer hemma på sin gård i stället för på bana (precis som travtränarna gått över till att göra hos oss) och hade en mängd hästvänliga tankar om träning; "be aldrig om högt tempo tidigt, använd alla slags underlag, överträna inte/bara några gånger i veckan, träna aldrig med svullna ben, låt hästarna gå ute". Hennes idéer innebär att tillämpa sunt förnuft i kapplöpningsträning, och det låter ju sunt. Boken är dessutom roligt skriven, handlar om alla fällor man kan falla i, från inköp av galoppör och framöver.