Death and euthanasia as contemporary topics in equine curricula

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Few college-level curricula in equine management classes address the topics of death and euthanasia, even though every horse eventually will experience the process. A comprehensive educational approach includes topics on assessing the need for euthanasia, decision making techniques, acceptable euthanasia methods, physiology of dying, and appropriate carcass disposal options, as well as addressing the emotional context of the human-horse bond and the grief process. Suggested projects for students include the development of an equine euthanasia plan or a quality of life assessment. Since death and euthanasia are integral components in the U.S. societal issues concerning the number of unwanted horses, the slaughtering of horses for human consumption, and the development of minimum welfare standards and regulations, education and research in these subjects will help to effectively resolve these situations and enhance the welfare of horses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)309-314
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Equine Veterinary Science
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2013


  • Curriculum
  • Death
  • Euthanasia
  • Horse-human relationship
  • Quality of life
  • Welfare

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Equine


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