The RVC plans to track horse movements through an existing app to help improve knowledge on equine infectious disease risks.
The vet school has partnered with Equine Register to carry out research using data from new functions within its Digital Stable app.
Funded by the Horse Trust, a project team at the RVC is hoping to widen information on risks posed from infectious disease spread within UK horse populations, including leisure and competition horses.
Digital Stable is Equine Register’s flagship application that connects owners, riders, professionals, and horse and pony enthusiasts with their digital records held on the Central Equine Database.
It allows users to manage data to improve accuracy and biosecurity, and now includes the “Record my ride” and “Record my journey” functions (pictured right). It is anonymised data from these that the RVC team will analyse to help identify hot spots where risk of infection is highest.
The team hopes the data will aid its research in expanding knowledge on managing risk, minimising infection spread, and help prevent outbreaks that impact equine health and cause disruption.
Tegan McGilvray, PhD student at the RVC, said: “Outbreaks of equine infectious diseases impact horse health and welfare, and are financially detrimental to all involved. Improving our understanding of the movement of all types of horses and ponies will allow for improvements in infectious disease mitigation and control.”
Jackie Cardwell, associate professor in epidemiology at the RVC, said: “Owners and riders will play a crucial role in this research by sharing their horse or pony’s movement data. Whether going on the occasional hack, attending a lesson or clinic, or competing in any level of competition, all movement data will make a valuable contribution.”
Stewart Everett, chief executive and founder of the Equine Register, said: “Equine welfare and biosecurity lie at the heart of everything we do here at the Equine Register, and it is a great pleasure to work with the RVC on this important research project.
“Our Digital Stable app equips everybody with the vital tools to become involved, tracking everything from longer journeys to quick hacks up the road at the simple click of a button.”
More information on the RVC project is available online.
Credit to: RVC to use app data to mitigate infectious disease spread (Vet Times)
Vet Times. (2023). RVC to use app data to mitigate infectious disease spread [online]
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