Equine simulator for training of rectal palpation in a mare

Scope of the method

The Method relates to
  • Animal health
The Method is situated in
  • Education and training
Type of method
  • Other


Method keywords
  • veterinary medicine
  • skillslab training
  • dummy
  • rectal palpation
  • horse
Scientific area keywords
  • Veterinary education
  • clinical training
Method description

In the skillslab, dummy models and simulators are used for teaching various clinical skills. Rectal palpation is an important and commonly performed procedure in equine veterinary practice. It is used primarily in determining the reproductive status of mares, but is also used in the diagnosis of other clinical conditions such as colic. An important part of this training process can be performed on a simulator in the skillslab.

Lab equipment

Commercial dummy horse from Veterinary Simulators Industries (https://www.vetsimulators.com/products#equine)

Method status
  • History of use
  • Internally validated

Pros, cons & Future potential


The use of educational animal models in a skillslab offers a number of significant advantages:

  • - Reduced use of laboratory animals and reduced discomfort for patients, as procedures can be practised on dummy models and simulators before performing them on a live animal.
  • - Teaching of clinical skills in a quiet and safe environment, reducing anxiety and stress for the veterinary student.
  • - Complex practical skills can be split into a number of small steps when practising them in the skillslab.
  • - This model is very expensive.
  • - Clinical training on live animals needed as well.
  • - Creating and repairing the home-made models is time consuming for a large group of students.


Future & Other applications

The horse can also be used in education for bandaging and injection techniques.

References, associated documents and other information

Associated documents
2020 overzicht nieuw skillslab2.jpg
Website VSI

Contact person

Annelies Decloedt


Ghent University (UGent)
Veterinary skillslab