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APBI 316 Equine Biology, Health and Welfare
APBI 316
Section: TBA
Instructor: Dr. Cathy Schuppli
Office Hours:
Class Schedule:
Important Course Pages
Lecture Notes
Course Discussion

General Course Information

This course examines the natural history, biology, and welfare of Equus species with a focus on the domestic horse. Equids have played an important role in human society; therefore, the course will start with situating the Equid in history and in current society. In order to understand how we care for, manage, and interact with horses, a firm understanding of the natural history and biology of the horse will be examined. This will include understanding behaviour, anatomy, nutrition, and reproduction. The pathology, prevention, and treatment of common diseases and health conditions will be presented. Finally, this understanding will be applied to identifying and understanding the modern challenges of keeping horses in captivity and working with them as pleasure, food, or sport horses.

Students will be challenged to integrate their knowledge from the entire course. As a basis for examinations, students will observe and analyze horse behaviour, learn common health problems and treatments, learn common welfare concerns and how these might be resolved. As a seminar course, students are expected to have read the assigned readings before each class and be prepared to discuss them in small or large groups and to answer questions by the instructors or other students.

Classes will typically include a combination of lectures, group discussions and hands-on examination of specimens. Guest speakers will be invited where possible. In general, students will participate in a variety of activities ranging from group discussion of real cases to problem solving. Several field trips will be scheduled.

Course Topics

Students will learn about:

  • The role of equids in human society
  • The biology and natural history of equids
  • Common diseases and other health problems: treatment and prevention
  • Common welfare concerns of modern day equids

Learning Objectives

Students will develop:

  • Awareness of the diversity of factors relevant to our relationship with equids: how we view, interact with, and take care of them
  • Skills in critical thinking and problem solving
  • Communication skills through a mixture of methods: writing, discussing, and presenting ideas and material in class and assignments

Course Details

There is no assigned textbook for this course but there are assigned readings. The class meets for two 1.5 hour sessions per week in Term 2, January to April. The course is open to students in 3rd and 4th year; there is a minimum of 3rd year standing in any faculty.

The course is offered by: Dr. Cathy Schuppli, Clinical Veterinarian, University of British Columbia and Honorary Research Associate, Faculty of Land and Food Systems