Equines in RDA

In this section of the website, you will find useful resources and information that you will need to keep our RDA horses and ponies fit and well. (For policies the group should adopt please go to the Policies Page).

Please scroll down this page for up to date Equine News. We also have sub-pages that contain a range of information from vaccinations to helpful videos. Forms can be found in the right hand side resources section. If you can’t find what you are looking for please contact Emma at RDA National Office.

If you are planning to reintroduce your horses to RDA after lockdown, please use the COVID equine assessment form found to the right of this page. For more information about restarting after lockdown please visit www.myrda.org.uk/runningyourgroup/getting-started-after-lockdown/

Hot Topic – EHV

The outbreak of Equine Herpes Virus (EHV) that originated in Valencia and has subsequently spread to other countries in Europe has understandably caused concern for some people worried about their horses in the UK. However, herpes is an endemic disease in the UK; every year herpes is identified as a cause of abortion and respiratory, and more rarely, neurological disease in horses living here. Outbreaks of herpes can occur in the UK as well, the most recent was in Hampshire in January 2020. Any horses coming back from Europe will need to be examined by a vet and certified that they are healthy to travel before they leave, and British Showjumping and British Dressage have released isolation and testing protocols for these animals upon their return. As such the risk to the general horse population here in the UK following the outbreak in Europe is no higher than usual.

There are pros and cons to vaccination against EHV, and advice on whether to vaccinate may vary depending on individual yard circumstances. It is best if this is discussed with the group’s own veterinary practice. As with any virus bio-security is key to keeping it contained. For more information and handy resources please see the Keeping Britain’s Horses Healthy Website for more information.

This Equine Health Self Certifcation Form  must be completed for each horse attending any show, training or activity run under the affiliation and rules of any British Equestrian member body between 29 March and 12 April 2021. This form should be completed by the rider or owner of the horse and submitted to the venue 24 hours before arrival at the show or as outlined in the event schedule. Failure to submit a declaration form before will result in the entry being forfeited and the horse will not be allowed on to the venue.

For the latest update on EHV please visit the British Equestrian website

Microchip Deadline

Many Equine charities run awareness weeks to bring attention to different health conditions and factors that affect Equine Health. This section will be regularly updated to keep RDA Groups aware of current campaigns. Our current hot topic is horse microchip deadlines which are compulsory from the following dates:

England: 1 October 2020
Scotland: 28 March 2021
Wales: 12 February 2021

You can check your microchip is registered on the Central Equine Datebase. If you don’t find a record of this then please contact your Passport Issuing Authority. For more information on microchips and the law please click here

Equine Contacts

We have a What’s App group for RDA Groups who own and loan their own Equines. This is in addition to our normal Group Equine Advisor contact although the same person may be on both. This is purely for up to date information regarding Equine welfare during the Covid19 situation.  If you would like to be added to this group please email Doug Smith riwm2@hotmail.com

Horse Movement and Brexit

Please follow the link to the BEF page for information on horse movement after Brexit.

RDA Horse of the Year 2019

Congratulations to Cracker from Lincolnshire Wolds RDA, winner for 2019 of our RDA Horse/Pony of the Year Award.

Every RDA Group has different equine needs, from sedate ponies to weight carrying cobs to athletic competition horses. We are trying to move away from the stereotypical ‘ideal RDA horse or pony’ and help people to realise that whilst groups needs differ depending on their participants, all RDA horses and ponies need to be fit, healthy, sound, athletic and able to adapt to the lifestyle at an RDA group. Cracker is a fantastic example of this.

Helton Bracken VII is a registered Fell pony, known by the name of Cracker. He is 13.2hh, 20 years old and has over his lifetime has given hours of enjoyment to both able and disabled riders. He has been an RDA pony for over 10 years. He works with both riders and drivers, often pulling the wheelchair adapted carriage.  He is very reliable and versatile, enabling drivers in wheelchairs, to access the countryside.

A well known pony locally, many people know Cracker from either his current RDA role or as a pony club pony.  Having been there, done that and got many tee-shirts, Cracker makes an ideal pony for RDA.

During riding sessions he can often be found helping the smallest of riders learn the basics and provides therapy wearing his adapted sheepskin.  He is another pony who can adapt his way of going depending on his rider, often offering a new challenge to our more experienced riders.

As a driving pony, Cracker is very willing and when asked can motor between the shafts!  He enjoys driving round the tracks as well as working in the arena.

Cracker loves kisses and when in his stable is normally checking out what is going on around him. Being quiet on the ground means all the participants can work with him, grooming and handling.  He has a lovable nature and often a butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth outlook ….just after he has done something cheeky! Cracker is on loan to our group from the Canter family, to whom we are extremely grateful. He is a firm favourite with everybody and a worthy winner of the RDA Horse/Pony of the Year Award.



Page Last Updated: August 24, 2021