The HARS is a method for objectively scoring the agitation level of a horse. Like agitation scales in other species, the score directly reflects the quantity and intensity of physical movement and vocalization. This scale does not score the emotional status of the horse; passive coping animals may be very stressed but show little, to no, obvious agitation.
A horse's level of agitation directly correlates to the handler skill level required to manage the horse. For example, a horse that can be taken to a new environment and exhibit low levels of agitation may be suited to a relatively inexperienced horse owner, whereas a horse that shows moderate to high levels of agitation could potentially be dangerous in the hands of an inexperienced owner.
The chart is useful for veterinarians to offer a standardised and objective assessment of agitation as part of a pre-purchase exam or to monitor the effect of some medications. It is useful for communication between owners, behaviour consultants and veterinarians. Buyers are also able to independently conduct the HARS assessment on potential purchases; the test is quick (2-minutes) and non-invasive. Owners, veterinarians and researchers can use the HARS to assess the efficacy of a behaviour modification program or behaviour modifying medications over time.
Benefits of the HARS:
How to complete the HARS:
At this stage the chart is in the validation phase as part of a PhD project. If you would like to participate in the validation process please contact Sharon Carroll 0412 826725 firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is link to the guidelines video to be watched prior to completing the chart. https://youtu.be/gdsVVBjrPgU