This is the home page for Welfare-in-Action, with the links being made live as they are developed by our Issue Managers. If you have information or links that you would like to share on any welfare issues please contact us.

A comprehensive menu of worldwide welfare issues is listed below. Each issue is linked to associated information, including relevant charities, action groups, petitions, blogs, videos, media coverage and details of any action that Concordia has taken or is taking.

Our Welfare Team is constantly working to keep the information on these pages up to date. To do this, we will need your help, so if you would like to add or edit data, please Contact Welfare.

Our concerns are for all equines, this includes horses, ponies, mules, donkeys, asses and zebras, and we have adopted the ‘Five Freedoms’ principles that were developed for farm animals, believing that any infringement of these principles may be regarded as a welfare issue:

  • 1. Freedom from hunger and thirst
  • 2. Freedom from discomfort
  • 3. Freedom from pain, injury or disease
  • 4. Freedom to express normal behaviour (includes the need to live in a suitable environment, freedom to roam and the company of other equines)
  • 5. Freedom from fear and distress

Welfare issues range from common, sub-optimal practices that happen all across the equine sector to issues that are outright abuse. Of course, they are incomparable, but to give horses a good life, we need to keep up with scientific research and adjust our own management criteria accordingly.

ISSUE Brief Details Geographical Area Freedom Infringement
Bit Abuse Training, competition, harness racing, leisure & recreation Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Blood Farms Unregulated premises in the serum & PMSG industries Argentina & Uruguay *2 *3 *5
Branding Hot branding Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Bullfights Bullring & training. Risk of serious injury Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Confinement Stable sizes & time spent stabled. Common management practice Worldwide *4 *5
Doping Competitions, including endurance races Worldwide *2 *4
Feral Horses and Burros Round-ups, holding facilities under BLM management USA *1 *2 *3 *4 *5
Hobbling Common management practice Worldwide *2 *3 *4 *5
Hoof Stacking & Soaring Tennessee Walking Horses USA *2 *3 *5
Individual Turnout Common management practice Worldwide *4
Noseband Tightness Training, competition, Harness Racing, leisure & recreation Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Over Breeding Multiplication without regard for demand which puts horses at risk in all areas of welfare concern Worldwide *1 *2 *3 *4 *5
Over-rugging Common management practice Worldwide *2
Over-worked, over-burdened & under-nourished Working horses including tourist industries Worldwide *2
Parasites Common sub-optimal practice Worldwide *2 *3
Rapping Show jumping training Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Restrictive Tack Training, competition, Harness Racing. Leisure & recreation. Includes draw-reins, overcheck & tongue ties. Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Rollkur Training & dressage Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Slaughter Round-ups, live transport, slaughter-houses & methods, also related to over-breeding Worldwide *1 *2 *3 *4 *5
Social Isolation Common management practice Worldwide *4 *5
Spur Abuse Training & competition Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Tail Nicking & Docking Showing & Working draft’s Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Tethering Common management practice Worldwide *1 *2 *3 *4 *5
Unsafe Paddocks Fencing, poisonous plants etc. Worldwide *3
Urine Farming PMU Mares Canada *2 *3 *4 *5
Weight over-weight Common management practice Worldwide *3
Weight under-weight Working-horses. Neglect. Poverty. Worldwide *1 *3
Weaning too young Common management practice Worldwide *5
Whipping Common management practice Worldwide *2 *3 *5
Unwanted Horses and Abandonment Includes enforcement of laws Worldwide *1 *2 *3 *4 *5
Working Immature Horses Training, racing, competitions, futurities, leisure & recreation USA Europe Australia *2 *3
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