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Behavior Services

Twin Pines Equine offers equine behavior services, including aversion therapy, under the direction of Dr. Ashley Kornatowski. Dr. Ashley has been trained by Dr. Sue McDonnell, a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist at the Havemeyer Equine Behavior Lab, at New Bolton Center.

We use positive reinforcement (a combination of verbal praise and small food rewards) and gradual step-wise introduction of stimuli to habituate horses to procedures that they may be averse to. Common aversions include needle-shyness, trailer phobias, or fear of basic physical examination procedures.

We offer packages of 4 half-hour sessions for one bundled price and recommend that these sessions take place over 2-4 weeks. During these sessions, we can train the owner or handler to continue with the training between visits. Consistency and frequency are key, so we have found that the most economical way to habituate horses is to bring the regular handler into these training sessions.

Needle Aversion Therapy

If you have a horse who is needle-shy, or overall “vet-shy”, we know how stressful a veterinary visit can be. It’s important to make sure we can treat your horse when necessary, and vaccinate to make sure that he’s protected against disease. These aversion therapy sessions can help keep your horse relaxed during routine and emergency veterinary visits.

If you have any questions about this service or would like to discuss your specific case with a veterinarian, please call our office at (860) 376-4373.