Dr Andrew Hemmings

Biography 

University positions

  • Head of School
  • Research committee member
  • Lunchtime research seminar coordinator

 

Research 

Research techniques 

  • Homologous competition binding assays featuring radioligands for quantification of receptor density / affinity
  • Tissue sectioning using cryotome and microtome devices
  • Autoradiography of radioligands bound to frozen tissue sections
  • Histological techniques applied to the brain
    • Nissl Satin
    • Weil’s stain for myelin sheaths
  • Behavioural probes of brain function
    • Tolmans Maze
    •  Extinction Learning Paradigms
    • Contingency Manipulation
    • Spontaneous Eye Blink Rate
  • Tooth-pit analysis of skeletal remnants to ascertain identity of predator species
  • Use of camera traps to monitor wild / feral animal populations 

Commercial research collaborations: 

  • Lesaffre Yeast Ltd (effect of yeast supplementation on behaviour and digestibility in horses)
  • Nupafeed Ltd, (effects of magnesium supplementation on behaviour in horses)
  • Natural Animal Feeds (effects of magnesium supplementation on behaviour in horses)
  • Horse Licks (effects of lick provision on stereotypy frequency in horses)
  • Likits (effects of lick provision on stereotypy frequency in horses)

Teaching 

Programme Manager

  • BSc (Hons) Equine Management
  • BSc (Hons) International Equine and Agricultural Business Management
  • BSc (Hons) Equine Studies

Teaching areas

  • Equine behaviour
  • Equine genetics
  • Animal welfare

Publications 

Journal articles and book chapters

  • Hemmings, A. Roberts, A. Chan, C. Harris, P. Ellis, A. and Dyson, S. (submitted) An exploratory investigation into the effect of rider weight on indicators of pain and stress in the horse. Applied Animal Behaviour Science
  • Daniels, S.P. Scott, L. and Hemmings, A. (2019) Crib-biting and equine gastric ulcer syndrome: Do horses that display oral stereotypies have altered gastric anatomy and physiology? Journal of Veterinary Behaviour, 30, 110-113
  • Roberts, A. Ellis, A. Harris, P. Dyson, S and Hemmings, A.  (2018) The influence of rider bodyweight on salivary cortisol concentrations and spontaneous blink rate for horses performing a standardised exercise test. Equine Veterinary Journal 50, Suppl. 52 16
  • Hemmings, A. Hale, C.E. Parker, M. and McBride S.D. (2018) Causal and functional interpretation of mu and delta opioid receptor profiles in mesoaccumbens and nigrostriatal pathways of an oral stereotypy phenotype. Behavioural Brain Research (open access) 353, 108-113
  • Roberts, K. Hemmings, A. Parker, M. and McBride, S.D. (2017) Causal Factor of Oral Versus Locomotor Stereotypy in the Horse. Journal of Veterinary Behaviour 20, 37-43
  • McBride, S.D. Roberts, K. Hemmings, A. (2017) Applied Neurophysiology of the Horse: training and welfare applications. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 190, 90-101
  • Randle, H. and Hemmings, A. (2017) The use of Technology in Equitation Science: a panacea or abductive science? Applied Animal Behaviour Science 190, 57-73
  • Roberts, K. Hemmings, A. Parker, M. and McBride, S.D. (2017) Developing a 3-choice serial reaction time task for examining neural and cognitive function in an equine model. Journal of Neuroscience Methods. 292: 45-52
  • Hale, C. Hemmings, A.J. and Randle, H. (2016) Accuracy of horse workload perception by owners when compared to published workload parameters. Journal of Veterinary Behaviour 15, 94.
  • Moore-Colyer, M.J.S., Hemmings, A. and Hewer, N. (2016) A preliminary investigation into the effect of ad libitum or restricted hay with or without Horslyx on the intake and switching behaviour of normal and crib-biting  horses. Livestock Science.186: 59-62  
  • Roberts, K., Hemmings, A.J. Moore-Colyer, M., Parker, M.O. & McBride, S.D. (2016) Neural modulators of temperament: A multivariate approach to personality trait identification in the horse. Physiology and Behavior. 167, 125-131.
  • Roberts, K., Hemmings, A.J. Moore-Colyer, M. & Hale, C. (2015) Cognitive differences in horses performing locomotor versus oral stereotypic behaviour. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 168, 37-44.
  • Moore-Colyer, M. Hemmings, A. and Hewer, N. (2014) The effect of ad libitum or restricted hay with or without Horslyx on the intake and switching behaviour of normal and crib biting horses. Advances in Animal Biosciences. Volume 5, Issue 1, pp 1-5
  • Hale, C.E. Warren, H. and Hemmings, A. (2012). The fermentation of hay and starch when incubated in vitro with faecal inoccula from either normal healthy horses or horses with a history of laminitis. In Forages and Grazing in Horse Nutrition. Wageningen Academic Publishers. 357 - 361
  • Hale, C.E. Hemmings, A. and Bee, S. (2011).  The effects of a high starch, cereal-based diet compared to a low starch, fibre-based diet on reactivity in horses.  In Applied Equine Nutrition and Training.  Wageningen Academic Publishers. 227-231.
  • Hale, C.E. Laycock, G. and Hemmings A. (2008). Stress responses of semi-feral foals at auction. Animal Welfare. 17 (supp) 100.
  • Hale, C.E. Moore-Colyer, M.J.S and Hemmings, A. (2007). Feeding with Welfare in Mind: the role of alternative forages in meeting energy demands of domesticated horses. Animal Welfare. 16, (supp) 170.
  • Hemmings, A. McBride, S.D. and Hale, C.E. (2007). Preservative responding and the aetiology of equine oral stereotypy. Applied Animal Behaviour Science. (104)143-150.
  • Hemmings, A. McBride, S.D and Smith, N.C (2004). The putative reward function of equine stereotypic behaviour. In Emerging Equine Science. Nottingham University Press. 67-78.
  • McBride, S.D and Hemmings, A. (2009). A neurologic perspective of equine stereotypy. Journal of Equine Veterinary Science. 29 (1) 10-16.
  • McBride, S.D and Hemmings, A. (2005). Altered mesoaccumbens and nigro-striatal dopamine physiology is associated with stereotypy development in a non-rodent species. Behavioural Brain Research. 159, 113-118.
  • McBride, S.D and Hemmings, A. (2004). Causal factors of equine stereotypy. In Emerging Equine Science. Nottingham University Press. 35-65.
  • McBride, S.D Hemmings, A. and Robinson, K. (2004) A preliminary study on the effect of massage to reduce stress in the horse. Journal of Equine Veterinary Science 24, 76-81

Conference presentations 

  • Hale, C.E and Hemmings, A. (2013) Differences in dry matter digestibility (DMD) in horses supplemented with and without live yeast. World Equine Veterinary Association Annual Conference Hungary
  • Hale, C.E and Hemmings, A. (2013) Effects of live yeast (NCYC Sc47) supplementation on behavioural reactivity scores in stabled horses. World Veterinary Congress Czech Republic
  • Hale, C.E and Hemmings, A. (2013) The effects of live yeast (NCYC Sc47) on faecal pH in horses maintained on a hay and concentrate diet. World Veterinary Congress Czech Republic
  • Hale, C.E and Hemmings, A. (2013) Effects of live yeast (NCYC Sc47) supplementation on the attempts of aberrant behaviour in stabled horses. International Society of Applied Ethology Annual Conference Brazil
  • Hale,C.E. Warren, H. and Hemmings, A. (2012). The fermentation of hay and starch when incubated in vitro with faecal inoccula from either normal healthy horses or horses with a history of laminitis. European Workshop on Equine Nutrition. Royal Agricultural College
  • Hale, C.E. Mann, T. Judd, S. and Hemmings, A. (2008). Voluntary feed intake, dry matter intake and consumption rate of three compositionally differing fibre sources when fed to veteran horses with compromised dentition. British Society of Animal Science Symposium. Scarborough UK.
  • Hatton, E. Hale, C.E. and Hemmings, A. (2007). An investigation into the efficacy of a commercially available gastric supplement for the treatment and prevention of Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS). ENUCO Conference, Vienna, Austria.
  • Hemmings, A. (2021) Training the brain: a headfirst journey into the neuroscience of learning. Equine Behaviour Association Webinar. Online  
  • Hemmings, A. (2020) Equine Stress and Crib-Biting- Time for a rethink? Invited Plenary Address NKC Training Annual Conference. Online
  • Hemmings, A. (2020) Training The Brain. Invited Plenary Address. Horses Inside Out Annual Conference. Loughborough University UK
  • Hemmings, A. (2019) Equine Stereotypic Behaviour: a head first approach to management and training. National Equine Forum. Institute of Mechanical Engineers. London, UK
  • Hemmings, A. (2019) Applied Neurophysiology of the Horse. Invited Plenary Address. Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Animal Therapy Annual Conference. Loughborough, UK.
  • Hemmings, A. (2018) Behavioural and cognitive indicators of brain function: welfare and training applications. Invited Plenary Address. Equine Behaviour Forum, Myerscough College UK.
  • Hemmings, A. (2018) Functional properties of the equine central nervous system. Invited Plenary Address. Horses Inside Out Annual Conference. Loughborough University, UK.
  • Hemmings, A. (2016) Frontiers in Behavioural Neuroscience: a headfirst approach to breeding training and management. Invited Plenary Address. Horses Inside Out Annual Conference. Royal Agricultural University
  • Hemmings, A. (2014) Behavioural probes of differential brain function. Invited Plenary Address. Equine Behaviour Forum. World Horse Welfare, Thetford Norfolk 
  • Hemmings, A. and Minter, R. (2014) Tooth pit analysis and genotyping to assess evidence of feral big cats in the UK. Mammal Society Annual Conference, Birmingham
  • Hemmings, A. (2014) The spine as an agent of behavioural control. Invited Plenary Address.  Horses Inside Out Annual Conference. Royal Agricultural College
  • Hemmings, A. and Hale, C.E. (2013) From gut to brain. Invited Keynote Presentation. Lesaffre Feed Additives Satellite Symposium, World Veterinary Congress Czech Republic
  • Hemmings, A. (2013) Behavioural probes of altered brain function. Invited Keynote Speech. Myerscough Research Symposium. Myerscough College
  • Hemmings, A. (2013) Feeding and behaviour. Invited Plenary Address. Equine Behaviour Forum, Myerscough College. 
  • Hemmings, A. (2013) Neurologic perspectives on animal welfare. Invited Plenary Address. UFAW / Hartpury Animal Welfare Conference. Hartpury College.
  • Hemmings, A. (2012) Equine behavioural neurobiology: research goals for the next decade and beyond. Invited Plenary Address. Annual Conference of the International Society for Equitation Science. University of Edinburgh.
  • Hemmings, A. (2012). Brain function in relation to training and performance. Invited Keynote Presentation. Alltech Equine Symposium. Hartpury College, Gloucestershire.
  • Hemmings, A. (2012). Brain function in relation to training and performance. Invited Keynote Presentation.  . Horses Inside Out Annual Conference.  Royal Agricultural College, Gloucestershire.
  • Hemmings, A. (2011).  Brain function in relation to training and performance. Invited Keynote Presentation. Horses Inside Out Annual Conference.  Stow on the Wold, Gloucestershire.
  • Hemmings, A. and Ellis, A. (2010).  Equine Stereotypies: feeding related? Invited Keynote Presentation. European Workshop on Equine Nutrition.  Royal Agricultural College, Gloucestershire
  • Hemmings, A. (2010).  The Biological Basis of Horse Behaviour. Invited Keynote Presentation. International Equine Touch Conference.  Doveridge, Derbyshire.
  • Hemmings, A. (2009).  Equine learning theory applied to modern training strategy. Invited Keynote Presentation. Annual Conference of Chartered Physiotherapists. University of Edinburgh.
  • Hemmings, A. (2009).  Stereotypic behaviour of the horse: New insights into pleasure function. Keynote Lecture. Myerscough Equine Symposium. Myerscough College, Lancashire.
  • Hemmings, A. McBride S.D. and Hale C.E. (2006). Opioid Circuitry and the aetiology of Equine Oral Stereotypy. Annual Conference for the International Society of Applied Ethology, Bristol University
  • Hemmings, A. McBride, SD and Smith, N.C (2004). The putative reward function of equine stereotypic behaviour. Emerging Equine Science. Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester
  • Hemmings, A. (2001). Elevated spontaneous blink rate in horses performing oral stereotypy. Warwickshire annual equine symposium. Warwickshire College.

Poster presentations

  • Hale, C.E. and Hemmings, A. (2016) In-Vitro buffering capacity of a variety of forages and feedstuffs. 8th European Workshop on Equine Nutrition. Dijon, France.
  • Moore-Colyer, M. Hemmings, A. and Hewer, N. (2014) The effect of ad libitum or restricted hay with or without Horslyx on the intake and switching behaviour of normal and crib biting horses. 7th European Workshop on Equine Nutrition. Leipzig, Germany
  • Hale, C.E. and Hemmings, A. (Pending June 2013). Effects of live yeast (NCYC Sc47) supplementation on the attempts of aberrant behaviour in stabled horses. International Society for Applied Ethology Congress, Brazil.
  • Hale, C.E. and Hemmings A.J. (2013). Gas production during in vitro fermentation of hay and starch differs between faecal inocula from healthy and laminitic-prone horses when incubated with or without live yeast (NCYC Sc47). European Equine Health and Nutrition Congress. Belgium
  • Hale, C.E. Warren, H. and Hemmings, A.J. (2012). The fermentation of hay & starch when incubated in vitro with faecal inoccula from either normal healthy horses or horses with a history of laminitis. 6th European Workshop on Equine Nutrition, Portugal.
  • Hale, C.E. Harber, C. and Hemmings, A.J. (2011). The accuracy of weight estimation equations for horses using two methods of body measurement.5th European Equine Health and Nutrition Congress. Belguim.
  • Hale, C.E. Laycock, G. and Hemmings, A.J. (2008). The effects of prior handling experiences on the stress responses of semi-feral foals presented at auction. International Society For Equitation Science, Dublin.  
  • Hale, C.E. and Hemmings, A.J. (2008). The role of alternative forages in satisfying both physiological and psychological demands of domesticated equidae. Proceedings of International Society for Equitation Science, Dublin.
  • Hale, C.E., Hatton, E. and Hemmings, A.J. (2008). The efficacy of a commercially available gastric supplement for the treatment and prevention of Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS). 10th World Equine Veterinary Conference. January 2008, Moscow, Russia.
  • Hale, C.E., Moore-Colyer, M.J.S. and Hemmings, A. (2006). Feeding with welfare in mind: The role of alternative forages in meeting energy demands of domesticated horses. UFAW & BVA Conference, London.
  • Hale, C.E. Newbold, C.J. and Hemmings, A. (2005). In vitro fermentation kinetics of a range of fresh forage legumes inoculated with equine faecal inocula. BSAS Annual Conference, York. 
  • Hale, C.E. and Hemmings, A. (Submitted). Effects of live yeast (NCYC Sc47) supplementation on behavioural reactivity scores in stabled horses. World Veterinary Association Congress
  • Hale, C.E. and Hemmings, A (Submitted). The effects of live yeast (NCYC Sc47) on faecal pH in horses maintained on a hay and concentrate diet. World Veterinary Association Congress.
  • Hemmings, A.J. McBride, S.D. and Hale, C.E. (2005). Upregulated mesoaccumbens dopamine transmission alters extinction learning profile of an operant response. Emerging Equine Science Symposium. Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester.
  • Laycock, G. Hale, C.E., and Hemmings, A. (2008). The effects of prior handling experience on the stress responses of semi-feral foals at auction. UFAW Animal Welfare Symposium, Birmingham.
  • Laycock, G. Hale C.E., and Hemmings, A. (2007). The effects of handler aggression on the stress responses of unhandled semi-feral foals at auction. BSAS Annual Conference, Southport.

Articles in technical press

  • Hemmings, A. and Hale, C.E. (2013) A matter of survival. Equine Health 6 [3] 37-39 
  • Hemmings, A. and Hale, C.E. (2013) From dawn horse to race horse. Equine Health 3 [2] 40-41
  • Hemmings, A. (2013) Breeding in the feral state. Equine Health 3 [1] 38- 40
  • Hemmings, A. (2012) The genetic basis of unwanted behaviour: a glimpse into the future of genetic screening. Equine Health. 2 [5] 20-21 

Articles in popular press 

 

  • Hemmings, A. (2021) Why the number of times he blinks reveals a lot about your horse. Your Horse, February 2021
  • Hemmings, A. (2020) Mind Games. Your Horse, September 2020
  • Hemmings, A. (2020) Crib-biting. What do we know? Horse and Hound, February 2020
  • Hemmings, A. (2020) Stable Vices. Time for a rethink? Your Horse, January 2020
  • Hemmings, A. (2019) Equine Stereotypic Behaviour Focus Piece. Horse and Hound, March 2019.
  • Hemmings, A. (2018) What can horse behaviour tell us about human mental health? Horse and Hound, August 2018.
  • Hemmings, A. (2011) Fuelling bad habits. Horse and Hound, June 2011.
  • Hemmings, A. (2009) Do crib-biters make better competition horses? Horse and Hound, August 2009.
  • Hemmings, A. (2002) Brain mechanisms of horse behaviour. Farmers Club Journal, August 2002.

Media broadcasts

  • 16.02.13 Radio Gloucester, feral cat 1 hour special
  • 13.11.14 BBC 2 i-Wonder, Big Cat web documentary 
  • 14.12.13 Radio Gloucester, feral cat 1 hour special
  • 08.03.13 BBC South West, News at 6, filmed coverage of tooth-pit analysis at RAU

Film appearances

  • 02.01.18 Britain’s Big Cat Mystery- Thunderhawk Productions (Winner, Accolade Global Film Competition)