Section 1. Basic Wild Equine Care
- interpret horse body language indicating an intent to harm
- explain the relationship between equine fear and human safety
- demonstrate personal responsibility for maintaining a safe environment
- explain what to do in case of accidents with horses
- discuss the implications of NM equine liability limits
Wild Horse Husbandry
- Recognize the signs of colic and how to minimize the risk of this traumatic illness
- Feed correct amount of either grass or alfalfa hay in an appropriate place
- Describe the general method to refeed a starving equine
- Connect high glycemic foods to health issues in mustangs
- Be able to calculate the weight of a horse or donkey
- Formulate a plan to introduce other foods to a mustang or burro
- Provide adequate and suitable water and salt for an equine
- Recognize the signs of health and illness in a horse
- Recite the healthy horse values for the five vital signs
- Recognize quidding
- Give reasons for mucking pens
Wild Horse Medicine
- Describe preventative measures for common health problems.
- Recognize the symptoms of each of the diseases for which there is a vaccine.
- Describe a safe protocol to worm horses with a high parasite load.
- Associate methods of control with various equine parasites and pests.
- Define sheath cleaning.
- Discuss safety aspects of dealing with a cast horse.
- Describe what to do about a horse quidding.
- Identify the symptoms of colic.
- Compare and contrast the major causes and mortality of colic.
- Discuss the latest research and current understanding of colic.
- Describe how to euthanize a horse in an emergency.
- Describe how obesity is related to metabolic syndromes in mustangs and donkeys.
- List eight contagious diseases to watch for in animals coming from holding facilities.
- Describe how to quarantine an animal.
External Equine Anatomy
- Identify any part of the horse unambiguously using the correct terminology.
- Interpret anatomical terminology.
- Decipher alpha angle brands.
- Describe the application of freeze brands and microchips.
- Become familiar with the brand inspection system of your state.
- Estimate a horse’s age by its teeth.
- Confirm an age estimation by comparing to the animal’s teeth.
Gelding the Wild Stallion
- Describe the gelding process.
- Outline the major BLM policies for gelding.
- Identify some aspects of gelding practice that may impact equine welfare.
- Care for a recently gelded animal.
- Identify and name major conformation faults.
- Calculate the weight of the horse and the maximum weight it should be asked to carry.
- Identify common horse colors.
- Name body markings.
- Read and interpret a signalment key.
Donkeys are Different
- Compare and contrast Equus asinus with Equus caballus
- Describe special care needed by burros
- Name behaviors using the correct terminology
- Describe behavior objectively
Section 2. Animal Training
Ethology and Behavior
- Explain why an animal trainer needs to know something about the ethology of the species.
- Differentiate between objective descriptions of behaviors and interpretations of behaviors.
- Reflect on your own cognitive biases about the behavior of animals.
- Discuss the neurochemistry of common motivations.
- Compare and contrast the action of adrenaline, cortisol, dopamine, and opioids.
- Describe the evidence for saying that animals feel emotions.
- Describe the 7 basic emotions.
- Recognize signs of fear.
- Discuss the sympathetic and parasympathetic system response to a threat.
- Differentiate between the sympathetic system stress response and the HPA-axis response.
- Apply the theories of fear to on-the-ground training situations.
- Describe how to use several strategies to solve a fear-based training problem.
- Discuss the evidence for a linear hierarchy within the herd.
- Critique the dominance model of training.
- Draw conclusions about the utility and limitations of personality descriptions.
- Devise ways to create informative personality descriptors.
- Develop an animal time budget.
- Score an animal on a qualitative behavioral assessment (QBA)
Equine Welfare and Ethics
- Discuss the welfare implications of horse training.
Laws of Behavior
- Appreciate how science is a valuable tool for animal training.
Stimulus & Response
- Engage in a credible conversation about applied animal behavior learning theory.
- Write a contingency statement for any behavior.
Respondent vs Operant
- Compare and contrast the primary modes of learning.
- Describe the roles of habituation and systematic desensitization in horse training.
- Plan for and carry out a respondent conditioning training project to create a desirable conditioned emotional response.
Antecedents & Behaviors
- Investigate and manipulate antecedents to behaviors.
- Describe the parameters of desired behaviors.
- Predict the effect of the trainer’s actions on the behavior of the animal.
- Design consequences to change the probability of behaviors using appetitive or aversive motivators.
- Recognize behaviors associated with changes in the reinforcement schedule.
- Describe several ways to increase or strengthen any naturally occurring behavior.
- Condition a bridge signal.
- Describe the consequences of various schedules of reinforcement
- Discuss various methods of reducing undesirable behaviors.
- Identify the potential problems of using punishment.
- Create a plan to reduce a behavior using positive reinforcement.
- Use accepted ABA assessment practices to investigate and plan for desirable behavior changes.
Section 3. World of Mustangs
The BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program
- Demonstrate familiarity with the BLM program and website.
- Demonstrate understanding of the application process.
- Provide a verbal explanation of the adoption process that would be suitable for addressing the questions of a potential adopter.
- Summarize The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.
- Discuss some of the controversies which the WH&B program faces.
Disposal of Excess Equine
- Distinguish opinion from fact.
- Describe the slaughter system with facts.
- Describe the adoption system with facts.
- Discuss the economics of the WH&B program horse disposal.
NEPA for Wild Equine
- Describe the NEPA process for federal projects.
- Analyze and critique an environmental assessment for a mustang gather.
The Mustang Heritage Foundation
- Describe the role MHF plays in the adoption effort.
- Observe (live or video) a Mustang Make-Over event.
- Describe how the TIP and StoreFront programs work.
- Apply to the TIP program if you want to be certified.
Wild Horse Annie and Wild Horse Advocacy
- Describe the role of WH advocacy in the welfare of the captured horses.
- Compare and contrast helicopter gathering with bait gathering.
- Describe opportunities for public input into the process.
- List and describe the landmark court cases between advocates and the government.
Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board
- Describe the role the Advisory Board plays in feral equine management.
- Observe (live or video) an Advisory Board meeting.
- Describe who is on the board and the interests they represent.
- Prepare a 3-minute presentation for the board on training for adoption.
Prison Programs and the Archetype of Taming
- Compare and Contrast the documentary Wild Horse Redemption with the movie The Mustang
- Describe the role of prisons in the WH&B Program.
Birth Control in Feral Equines
- Describe the biological effects of PZP.
- Detail the invention and marketing of PZP.
- Review the major studies of PZP usage.
- Compare PZP usage with surgical sterilization approaches.
Rangeland Management Fundamentals
- List the three aspects that define a grazing system
- Enumerate the values that should inform a good grazing system
- Compare and contrast the dietary preferences of cattle, burros, and horses
- Compare and contrast the landscape use of cattle, burros, and horses
- Compare and contrast grazing systems for cattle, burros, and horses
- List 5 ecosystem factors that control forage production on rangeland
- Describe the issues wild horses create for ranchers
- Describe the issues wild horses create for fish and wildlife
- Understand the issues that predict adoption success or failure.
- Compare and Contrast various Adoption contracts and Bills of Sale
- Prepare marketing collateral to attract adopters.
- Take illustrative photos of horses that are suitable to advertise them.
Doing Business with the Federal Government
- Outline the federal government procurement process
- Compare and RFQ, IFB, and Cooperative Agreement
- List the main requirements to become a federal contractor
- Be able to use technology to search for contracting records and opportunities.