Machteld van Dierendonck has been working as a behaviour & welfare specialist in the field of (equine) behaviour and welfare (assessments) for the last 15 -20 years.
On March 1, 2016 the equine behaviour clinic has started at the Equine Clinic, and she is one of the priciple clinical ethologists.
As of 2012 Machteld van Dierendonck has accepted an invitation and became visiting professor in Ethology and Welfare, especially for equines and welfare assessments at the Veterinary Faculty of Ghent University; in 2014 she was offered a similar position and became visiting professor in Ethology and Welfare at Veterinary Sciences of the University of Antwerp in 2015, both in Belgium. Besides the position in Ghent, she is guest scientist at the Equine Clinic of the Veterinary Faculty as well as at the Animal Ecology group (formerly Behavioural Biology) of Environmental Biology at the Science faculty, both at the Utrecht University (NL). Besides these functions she has established her own Equine Clinical Ethological referral practice Equus Research & Therapy. She spent several years abroad teaching and doing research in Sweden, Italy, Iceland and Mongolia. In Mongolia she was the scientific resident in a project reintroducing Przewalski’s horses. She was responsible for both the research and monitoring and their health during transport of the Przewalski’s horses as well as the monitoring of wildlife in the Hustain Nuruu reserve and the set-up of all aspects of the monitoring and training of the Mongolian co-workiers.
In 2010 she became board certified as associate of the ECAWBM as (Equine) Veterinary Behaviour Specialist; in 2013 she became also board certified associate for the subspecialty Animal Welfare Science-Ethics-Law of the ECAWBM.
Her current work mainly consists of research, teaching (graduates and post graduates; supervising student research) and treating equine patients with (additional) behaviour problems. Additionally she is giving advice to the equine industry, the Dutch government and beyond as well as to equine specialists’ worldwide. Her research field is both fundamental and applied. She has published more than 30 peer-reviewed articles, a few book chapters and a (general public) book (in Dutch). Her most recent publication is a chapter in equine locomotion 2e edition. She is founding member of the Dutch Stichting Certipet that certifies Animal Behaviour Therapist.
She is also one of the seven founding members of ISES (international Society of Equitation Science) an international scientific organisation of which the mission is “to promote and encourage the application of objective research and advanced practice which will ultimately improve the welfare of horses in their associations with humans”. The 2011 ISES conference was in The Netherlands and she was vice Chair of the local organisation committee and chair of the scientific commission