World Horse Welfare and The Donkey Sanctuary Launch New EARS Tool
World Horse Welfare and The Donkey Sanctuary have launched their new ‘Equid Assessment Research and Scoping’ tool, otherwise known as the ‘EARS’ tool.
The innovation is set to give the organisations a deeper understanding of the global health of horses and donkies, including underlying reasons behind poor health. The tool will help both charities measure the impact that their current interventions are having, giving guidance for improvements and areas which need investment.
The ‘EARS’ tool is based around a questionnaire which has been developed to gather information about a horse or donkey and its surrounding environment. The questionnaire can also be carried out on small groups of equids in similar environments, through repeated use of the tool.
Discussing the ‘EARS’ tool, Dr. Joao Rodrigues, the Lead Welfare Assessor at The Donkey Sanctuary, explained;
For me, one of the strongest aspects of the ‘EARS’ is that it will give us the chance to build specific protocols for specific situations, regardless of the location or function of a working equid, allowing us to collect evidence-based information in a very accurate way and guiding us in the decision-making process.”
Emma Hales, World Horse Welfare’s International Programme Officer, also commented on the ‘EARS’ tool and collaboration with The Donkey Sanctuary, adding;
We are very excited to be involved in the EARS project. It has been a great opportunity to work in partnership with the Donkey Sanctuary on developing this welfare assessment tool, enabling us to share and include both organisations’ experiences of assessing the welfare of equids in the field.”
Collaborating with The Donkey Sanctuary, the worlds largest equine charity, World Horse Welfare are planning to use the EARS tool to support their UK, European and international work.
The information collected will implement strategic decisions on projects all over the world, ensuring they are delivering a maximum impact effect. In addition, the charities aim to collect and share appropriate data of the world’s current equid welfare situation with the public.