Categories
Animal Welfare Community Research

Horse racing’s big hit: why use whips on horses?

Why are whips used in horse racing?

Do whips make horses run faster or win races?

Are jockeys using whips to steer and stay safe, or are they simply whipping tired horses?

These are questions that prompted Professor Paul McGreevy of the University of Sydney to research the use of whips in horse racing.

Paul is recognised by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons as a specialist in Veterinary Behavioural Medicine.

His research focuses on the behaviour and welfare of horses and dogs, and he is the author of six books and over 120 peer-reviewed articles on animal behaviour.

Paul’s award-winning research examining the use of whips in horse racing aims to further our awareness of the experience of horses, extending to a recent experiment capturing the thermographic effects of his own leg being hit with a padded whip.

As the Spring horse racing carnival hits its peak in Melbourne, Australia this week, we asked Paul to discuss his findings and what it means for horses, beyond the glamour and excitement of race day.

Podcast

Publications

Paul McGreevy - Why are whips used in horse racing?
Paul McGreevy – Why are whips used in horse racing?

Thomson, P., Hayek, A., Jones, B., Evans, D., McGreevy, P. (2014). Number, causes and destinations of horses leaving the Australian Thoroughbred and Standardbred racing industriesAustralian Veterinary Journal, 92(8), 303-311.

McGreevy, P., Caspar, G., Evans, D. (2013). A pilot investigation into the opinions and beliefs of Australian, British, and Irish jockeys. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: clinical applications and research, 8(2), 100-105.

McGreevy, P., Hawson, L., Salvin, H., McLean, A. (2013). A note on the force of whip impacts delivered by jockeys using forehand and backhand strikes. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: clinical applications and research, 8(5), 395-399.

McGreevy, P., Ralston, L. (2012). The distribution of whipping of Australian Thoroughbred racehorses in the penultimate 200 m of races is influenced by jockeys’ experience. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: clinical applications and research, 7(3), 186-190.

McGreevy, P., Corken, R., Salvin, H., Black, C. (2012). Whip Use by Jockeys in a Sample of Australian Thoroughbred Races – An Observational Study. PLoS One, 7(3), 1-6. [Open Access]

Evans, D., McGreevy, P. (2011). An Investigation of Racing Performance and Whip Use by Jockeys in Thoroughbred RacesPLoS One, 6(1), 1-5. [Open Access]

McGreevy, P., Oddie, C. (2011). Holding the whip hand – a note on the distribution of jockeys’ whip hand preferences in Australian Thoroughbred racing. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: clinical applications and research, 6(5), 287-289.

Paul McGreevy: Google Scholar profile with further publications

Links

Paul McGreevy: University of Sydney

The Conversation:  Whips hurt horses – if my leg’s anything to go by

RSPCA Australia position on racehorse whips

Header image used with permission © Liss Ralston

Categories
Animal Welfare Community

Healthy communities: dogs and people

Sophie Constable, Education Officer at Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities (AMRRIC), has training as a veterinarian, in Indigenous education, and in public health.

She has worked in the field in pet education programs in urban, rural and remote Indigenous communities.

In this episode of Human Animal Science, we chat to Sophie about her research exploring the place of dogs in modern Indigenous communities in Australia and how best to promote the mutual health of dogs and communities.

Podcast

Publications

Sophie Constable

Constable, S. E., Brown, G., Dixon, R. M., & Dixon, R. (2008). Healing the hand that feeds you: exploring solutions for Dog and Community Health and Welfare in Australian Indigenous culturesFaculty of Education-Papers, 219-229.

Constable, S., Dixon, R., & Dixon, R. (2010). For the Love of Dog: The Human Dog Bond in Rural and Remote Australian Indigenous Communities .Anthrozoos: A Multidisciplinary Journal of The Interactions of People & Animals23(4), 337-349.

Constable, S. E., Dixon, R. M., Dixon, R. J., & Toribio, J. A. (2013). Approaches to dog health education programs in Australian rural and remote Indigenous communities: four case studiesHealth promotion international,28(3), 322-332.

Links

AMRRIC

Aboriginal dog
Dogs in aboriginal indigenous communities
Dogs in aboriginal indigenous communities
Dogs in aboriginal indigenous communities
Images courtesy of AMRRIC
Categories
Community

Hope and freedom: Street dogs of Bosnia

Stephen Jenkinson is the United Kingdom’s only specialist in behavioural psychology and its practical application to influence the behaviour of walkers with dogs.

Stephen holds a Master of Science (MSc) and post-graduate Diploma in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling.

In 2013, the United Nations Development Program contacted International Fund for Animal Welfare for help in managing the issue of roaming dogs in Bosnia as a serious community safety issue.

Dog advocates had been attempting to control packs of street dogs through limited catch-sterilize-and-return programs or placing dogs into newly constructed shelters, but the programs were not working and people did not feel safe.

Bosnia needed a different approach – and that’s where Steve became involved…

Podcast

Links

International Fund for Animal Welfare: Partnering with UN Development Program to help dogs in Bosnia

Your Dog (Feb 2014) article: A better life for the Street dogs of Bosnia? By Stephen Jenkinson (PDF)

Publications

Lowe, C. N., Williams, K. S., Jenkinson, S., & Toogood, M. (2014). Environmental and social impacts of domestic dog waste in the UK: investigating barriers to behavioural change in dog walkers. International Journal of Environment and Waste Management, 13(4), 331-347. (PDF)

Jenkinson, S. (2014) Commercial Dog Walkers in the Outdoors: Attitudes, Engagement and Opportunities (PDF)

Jenkinson, S. (2013) Planning for dog ownership in new developments: reducing conflict – adding value (PDF)

Images: Flickr/viciousbits