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Prof. Dr. Uta König von Borstel


Phone: +49 641 99-37622



Curriculum Vitae


since 2017

Professorship of Animal Husbandry, Behaviour and Welfare

University of Gießen, Germany


Interim Professor of Animal Breeding

University of Kassel, Germany 


Interim Professor; until 2014 Postdoc

Coordinator MSc-Programm Equine Science 

University of Göttingen, Germany


Assistant Professor in Equine Science

University of Guelph, Canada


PhD Animal Behaviour & Welfare

University of Guelph, Canada


MSc Animal Genetics

University of Halle, Germany


BSc Animal Science

University of Guelph, Canada




  • 2018 - 2020: Scientific representative of the working group of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture for the revision of the national animal welfare guidelines in equestrian sports
  • Since 2020: Temporary member of the Animal Welfare Advisory Board of the German Equestrian Federation
  • Since 2017: Member of the RAL Quality Mark Advisory Board for the development of a certification procedure for working horse stables
  • Since 2016: Member of the Advisory Board Animal Welfare and Ethics of the Association of Leisure Riders and Drivers in Germany
  • 2014-2018: Member Animal Protection Plan Lower Saxony - Group Horses
  • Since 2012: Founding member and current Research Officer of the International Society for Equitation Science (ISES)
  • Since 2012: Member of several horse-specific working groups of the European Association for Animal Production  
  • Since 2009: Member of the Board of the Society for the Promotion of Equine Research  (GWP e.V.)
  • 2006: Student Representative of Animal Welfare Committee of the University of Guelph, Canada


Publications (Excerpt)


  • K. von Borstel, U., Visser, K., Hall, C. (2016) Indicators of stress in equitation. Applied Animal Behaviour Science. Invited review
  • Pierard, M., K. von Borstel, U., Visser, K., Hall, C., Hawson, L., Nevison, C., Burton, F., McLean, A., Averis, A., McGreevy, P. (2015) Evolving protocols for research in equitation science. Journal of Veterinary Behavior. 10, 255-266. 
  • K. von Borstel, U., McGreevy, P. (2014) Behind the vertical and behind the times. The Veterinary Journal 202: 403-404. Invited editorial
  • Kienapfel, K., Link, Y., K. von Borstel, U. (2014) Prevalence of different head-neck positions in horses shown at dressage competitions and their relation to conflict behaviour and performance marks. PLoS ONE 9: e103140. 
  • Heleski, C., Wickens, C., Minero, M., DellaCosta, E., Wu, C., Czeszak, E., K. von Borstel, U. (2014) Do soothing vocal cues enhance horses’ ability to learn a frightening task? Journal of Veterinary Behaviour. 10, 41-47. 
  • K. von Borstel, U., Glißmann, C. (2014) Alternatives to conventional evaluation of rideability in horse performance tests: suitability of rein tension and behavioural parameters. PLoS ONE 9: e87285 doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0087285
  • Merkies, K., Sievers, A., Zakrajsek, E., MacGregor, H., Bergeron, R., K. von Borstel, U. (2014) Preliminary results suggest an influence of psychological and physiological stress in humans on horse heart rate and behaviour. Journal of Veterinary Behaviour 9:242-247
  • K. von Borstel, U., Bernhard, V. (2013) Impact of health disorders and culling reasons on functional and biological longevity in warmblood breeding stallions. The Veterinary Journal. 197:273-279 
  • K. von Borstel, U. (2013) Invited review: Assessing and influencing personality for improvement of animal welfare: a review of equine studies. CAB Reviews, 8:e1-27, doi: 10.1079/PAVSNNR20138006;
  • K. von Borstel, U. and Keil, J. (2012) Horses’ behaviour and heart rate in a preference test for shorter and longer riding bouts. Journal of Veterinary Behavior- Clinical Applications and Research 7: 362-374;  DOI: 10.1016/j.jveb.2012.02.006
  • Friedrich, C., Rogers, C., König, S., K. von Borstel, U. (2011) Examination of Longevity in Dressage Horses - A Comparison between Sport Horses in New Zealand and Hanoverians in Germany. Züchtungskunde 83: 68-77. Invited paper
  • von Borstel, U., Duncan, I. J. H., Shoveller, A.K., Merkies, K., Keeling, L. J., Millman, S. T. (2009) Impact of riding in a coercively obtained Rollkur-posture (hyperflexion of the neck) on welfare and fear of performance horses. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 116: 228-236.