To an inclusive, ethical and supported future for Equine professionals
At International Equine Professionals, we believe in progress. Progress for equines - their quality of life, emotional welfare, our interaction styles, allowing them to be individuals and to have their species specific values provided.
Progress is also important, though, for the professionals and students who strive to improve the lives of the equines that they work with.
International Equine Professionals is a membership organisation, building a collaboration of professionals and students from all niches of the equine world.
Our mission is to provide a supportive community of like-minded people, all sharing our core values;
Furthering understanding of equines in order to improve emotional and physical welfare
Promoting educational facilities which align with our ethos and aims for equines
Supporting others in their journey towards outstanding ethics
Helping the wider community to push the welfare paradigm beyond simple physical wellbeing
Sharing knowledge and experience amongst us and externally in order that we all gain a better insight into the many aspects of equine care - the 'Whole Horse'
Consistantly endeavouring to help the equines that we work with to live enriched, happy lives with their emotional and physical needs met
We strive to remain inclusive, creating opportunities within an indiscriminate community, for all individuals and organisations who share our commitment to improved equine welfare. A progressive attitude towards the wellbeing of equines is something that we must and will uphold, however we welcome people from all niches of life, regardless of ethnicity, sexual preference, gender identidy, disabilities (both visible and invisible), neurodivergence, or any other marginalised sections of society.
There are many hurdles, whether it be from working as a self-employed professional, navigating environments with a more 'fixed' mindset, witnessing less than ethical practices, feeling alone, facing difficulties with study material - there are many possible adversities. Whatever niche of the industry you are working in, or studying for, IEP endeavours to support you. This may be within the private member's Facebook page or on a one-to-one basis
One of the benefits of being part of a multi-profession organisation is that we can share knowledge, experience, contacts and opportunities. Many new projects have been born out of IEP members meeting and joining forces to combine their expertise. In addition, as an organisation, we are proud to collaborate with others in order to further the opportunities we can offer and expand on ways in which we can all work more effectively for equines. We are always open to member suggestions
Above qualifications or the learning stage our members are at, is the fact that they all align with our criteria for ethics. We strongly feel that the equine world needs a significant shift into the current day understanding of sentience and psychological experience of non-human animals - equines are well behind some other species. We require members to uphold a high standard of ethical practice, for the equines they work with but also their human clients and other professionals.
Having formed ISAP in 2009, Brigitte Barton became acutely aware of the need to provide similar community organisations for individual species which were focused on the wellbeing of the animals and our work with them. So, International Canine Behaviourists was born and is now a leading light in the field of canine behaviour professionals. This was later followed by International Feline Behaviourists and in 2019, International Equine Professionals (IEP). Brigitte’s passion for animal welfare, applied behavioural science and ethical, positive interactions with animals has been the driving force behind ISAP and is the shared ethos of those who now run ICB, IFB and of course, IEP.
The organisations are all based around providing a safe community of international animal students, professionals and owners – somewhere to share knowledge, discuss new research, learn from the experience of others and know that you are amongst like-minded people who are all dedicated to ensuring the mental, emotional and physical wellbeing of the animals they spent time with. In some professions, that means educating owners in positive, science based and modern practices, which can be challenging. It’s great to have a ‘forum’ where you can ask/provide advice and know that you’re not alone!
"TRUE BENEVOLENCE OR COMPASSION, EXTENDS ITSELF THROUGH THE WHOLE OF EXISTENCE AND SYMPATHIZES WTH THE DISTRESS OF EVERY CREATURE CAPABLE OF SENSATION"
~ Joseph Addison
Anyone involved with any of the animals that fall under the Equidae ‘umbrella’ is more than welcome, and we are all keen to learn more about them! So, as well as horses, donkeys and mules, we’d love to hear about zeedonks, hinnies, onagers and zebras.
Membership is by application as we are extremely passionate about creating a worldwide organisation based around an ‘equine-centred’ approach, supporting positive reinforcement, emotional understanding, training and interactions which are mutually enjoyable for animals and humans. We do not condone the use of spurs, whips, chifneys or other punishment-based practices. We do, however, appreciate that the equine world is not as far progressed as that of the canine in terms of dispensing with aversive methods and outdated concepts, so we would love to support those who are in the process of making the cross-over towards a better understanding of our animals.
IEP, as our name suggests, is not solely an organisation for behaviour specialists. The professions are extremely varied including (but by no means limited to);
Tack Fit Specialists
Equine Facilitated Psychotherapists
Of course, without experience and qualification, we wouldn't have professionals, so IEP also welcomes and encourages students. It is within all of these areas that the welfare of our equines can be improved upon and that knowledge can be shared across disciplines to enhance an overall understanding of the aspects of life from the equine’s point of view.
BEHIND THE SCENES
Due to the collaborative nature of IEP, various members contribute to its progression and and we welcome input and love the involvement they have. As a not-for-profit organisation, our administration team is made up of volunteers who are committed to its cause.
Equine Sports & Remedial
Equine-Human Relationship and Behaviour Consultant
Equine Nutritionist & Behaviourist
Kate has been involved in IEP since 2020 and has been a key player behind its growth; networking, managing social media, membership applications, webinar organisation and generally striving to achieve progression.
Irene has been a member of IEP since 2021 and has been on the administration team since 2022, working hard on the membership application process, online content, creation of monthly member online get togethers ideas for future collaborations and projects. Her creative brain as well as her extensive knowledge is invaluable!
Geertje has been on the
administration team for IEP since 2022, having been a member since 2021.
She has been fundamental in the creation and running of our 'Friends of IEP' Facebook group, as well as offering her experience in multiple areas and creating ideas for projects. She has made a considerable contribution to the Education area of our website with articles and other resources.
IEP aims to become a recognised standard for those working in the equine industry, as is ICB for canines, IFB for felines and ISAP for the wider world of animals. We are working to provide a range of CPD in the form of webinars, covering many aspects of working with, living with, and improving the lives of equines. To purchase our past events, please visit our Webinars page – also, keep an eye out on our Facebook page for details of forthcoming webinars. We also encourage participation in certain educational opportunities which we are pleased to have an affiliation with, many of which are run by IEP members and partners. Please visit our ‘Education’ section for more information.