New Report From Britain’s Horse Welfare Board Could Be Game Changer For Racehorses

Britain’s Horse Welfare Board has created a strategic plan to track British racehorses for their entire lives. The report, entitled A Life Well Lived, envisions rolling out this change and others over the next five years; the board notes that this is just one step in the process of ensuring racehorses in Britain are safe.

There are gaps in information and accountability for racehorses throughout their lifetime, the Board says. It feels that these responsibilities must be clarified. In particular, the roles of the following should be detailed out:

  • Owner responsibility, in relation to horses at the end of their racing careers
  • Breeder responsibility, as the decision to breed a Thoroughbred begins the lifetime duty of care
  • Auction house, training farm and rehoming center responsibility

The board notes that lifetime traceability is the first step in ensuring British racehorses are safe, though this may highlight some welfare and reputation challenges along the way. The report also encourages the development of a euthanasia policy, which should be adopted by the entire racing industry.

In addition to lifetime responsibility, the report contains 20 recommendations and offers 26 projects to encourage equine welfare, including safety, quality of life, and growth and maintenance of trust in the racing industry. All proposals focus on better data, safety improvements, review of policies, training, communication and education.

The report was commissioned by industry stakeholders and was well received by the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), who will be responsible for some of the recommendations. The BHA notes that the entire racing industry will have to unite and play a role in ensuring the success of the report’s projects.

Rad the full report here.

Read more at HorseTalk.

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