Equine Guelph to Offer Online Course on the Equine Industry

For most horse owners, the approach of a new year encourages us to reflect back on how things were done in the past, examining what worked and what didn’t and making positive changes for the future.

In January, Equine Guelph will provide students with the opportunity to re-examine their knowledge regarding equine welfare with its online course, The Equine Industry. Allowing those to learn from the comfort of their own home, this 12-week course, is designed to assist dedicated horse owners in furthering their knowledge about the horse industry as it relates to horse welfare and the future of this industry. This course provides students with the flexible learning opportunity no matter what their levels of involvement within the equine industry.

“By applying a science research-based approach to horse management, training and related performance, students will learn to eliminate practices that can cause an unfavourable effect relating to the health and welfare of the horse,” said course instructor Gayle Ecker, director of Equine Guelph.

Course topics will include exploring equine evolution; the evolution of the hoof; the many facets affected by current management practices; first domestication of the horse; and its role in work, warfare, and sport as well as a companion animal.

Students will also have the opportunity to interact online with special guest speakers, including having questions answered by authorities in their field. Guest speakers in this course include Dr. Sandra L. Olsen, PhD, director of the Center for World Cultures at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, in Pittsburgh, Pa., who will enlighten students on the first evidence of domestication in horse; Jeff Thomason, PhD, a researcher at the University of Guelph, who will discuss the evolutionary changes to the horse’s hoof and its implications; and Derek Nelson, a Historical Military Strategist to discuss the role of the horse in the military.

“Throughout time, horses have been used in many different capacities,” said Ecker. “If we don’t learn to understand the problems affecting our horses now, we don’t have a hope to solve them in the future.”

The Equine Industry is part of the Equine Business Management Certificate and an elective course in the Equine Welfare Certificate and the Diploma in Equine Studies continuing education programs, and will be included in Equine Guelph’s Winter 2014 online lineup. The winter semester runs from Jan. 13 to April 5, 2014. Registration is now open, with early bird registration ending on Dec. 13, 2013.

For more information, please contact Open Learning and Educational Support at info@OpenEd.uoguelph.ca, call 519/767-5000, or visit www.equinestudiesdiploma.com.

Equine Guelph is the horse owners’ and care givers’ center at the University of Guelph. It is a unique partnership dedicated to the health and well-being of horses, supported and overseen by equine industry groups. Equine Guelph is the epicenter for academia, industry, and government for the good of the equine industry as a whole. For further information, visit www.equineguelph.ca.

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