Safety helmets make horse sense for equine teams

Safety helmets make horse sense for equine teams

VETPARTNERS is launching a campaign to encourage equine vets, nurses and all horse handlers to wear safety helmets when working with horses.

The veterinary group has provided all of its UK equine practices with hard hats for team members to wear when conducting certain procedures with equine patients.

During the week of May 17 to 21, VetPartners will be highlighting the importance of wearing helmets to team members who handle horses and will also be providing training in hat safety.

The safety campaign, called Hat Hair – Don’t Care, has seen VetPartners team up with hat manufacturer Charles Owen to provide practices with hats and silks branded with individual practice logos.

Anyone handling a horse at a VetPartners equine or mixed practice is encouraged to wear head protection when:

  • Leading horses
  • Holding horses for veterinary examinations or procedures, including lameness workup
  • Lunging horses
  • Grooming or picking out feet
  • Turning out horses in paddocks
  • Clipping, shoe removal, administering injections and nasogastric intubation
  • Assisting loading
  • Riding

Vets are also urged to consider wearing head protection as standard for swabbing stallions or any procedure involving a stallion’s reproductive organs, hind limb nerve blocks and injecting horses of known or declared poor temperament.

VetPartners Equine executive member Carrie Goodbourn, who is overseeing the campaign, said: “Head injuries are sadly a high risk for vets and nurses in practices and they occur in all sorts of circumstances.

“People can be seriously hurt, and in some cases, suffer life-threatening injuries, so the health and safety of our colleagues has to be top of our agenda.

“In other professions and disciplines within the equine industry, the wearing of hard hats has for a long while been accepted as the norm and a mandatory safety requirement. In taking those steps, we  are aligning ourselves with leading, respected organisations like the British Horse Society, which have been active in advocating the wearing of hard hats for many years.”

VetPartners has 160 of the UK’s most respected and trusted small animal, equine, mixed and production animal veterinary practices, with 6,000 employees working in around 500 sites.

It’s equine section is home to some of the UK’s best-known practices, including Rainbow Equine Hospital in North Yorkshire, Liphook Equine Hospital in Hampshire, Three Counties Equine Hospital in Gloucestershire and Ashbrook Equine Hospital in Cheshire.

For media enquiries only, please contact Amanda Little, VetPartners Senior PR and Communications Manager, on 07970 198 492 or email