From the Recommended Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Horses in PMU Operations (2013):
Animal welfare considerations are important for keeping and raising animals, both in Canada and internationally. Practices, which may once have been deemed acceptable, are now being reassessed and modified according to new knowledge and changing attitudes. High standards of animal welfare are not only important legally, but also have a direct economic benefit and ensure that the horse industry has a place in the international market.
Providing competent handling and an environment that allows horses to fulfil their basic needs are crucial elements of responsible animal care.
Elements of responsible animal care include:
- Comfort and shelter;
- Readily accessible potable water and a diet to maintain the animal in full health and vigour;
- Opportunity for reasonable movement;
- Company of other animals, particularly of like kind;
- Opportunity to exercise most normal patterns of behaviour;
- Prevention or rapid diagnosis and treatment, of abnormal behaviour, injury and disease;
- Emergency arrangements to cover outbreaks of fire, the breakdown of essential mechanical services and disruption of supplies.
The recommendations in this Code are based on the best knowledge currently available. We recognize that research into, and evaluation of, various management practices and welfare issues must be supported. As scientific and technological knowledge advances, management procedures will evolve further. We encourage the pursuit of such knowledge and adoption of viable handling and management procedures.