When a horse or pony is needle shy it is usually because they are worried about having an injection. Their fear response may be shown through avoidance behaviours such as pulling away, pushing handlers out of the way, rearing or trying to escape. When a horse is needle shy this can be a very stressful and frightening experience for them. The problem often escalates when injections are attempted while they are feeling afraid.
Our behaviour experts have put together their guide to helping horses who are worried about having injections. Using a real-life example, the team will show you tried and tested methods that will take the fear out of vet visits. The guide is packed with useful and practical tips to help you work with your horse towards a permanent solution.
Anna Haines, Equine Behavioural Lead explains: “There are many situations where owners simply hope for the best when the time arrives for a veterinary intervention. We have lots of experience of handling unwanted behaviour like this. We’re keen to share our Confident Horse series with as many people as possible so they can benefit from our knowledge. Time and time again we have seen our methods make a real difference.
“This training doesn’t need to take up lots of your time but can instead just become part of your normal daily routine with your horses. Ensuring that our horses remain calm and relaxed during our training sessions with a focus on them having a positive, enjoyable experience can help us to create horses who are confident in a variety of different situations.”
The Confident Horse series of videos and webinars was launched earlier this year as a way for horse owners around the country to tap into the sanctuary’s wealth of experience and knowledge.