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A Sound Economic Investment – The Pre-Purchase Exam

Filed under: Current Articles,Featured,Health & Training |     

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306 – March/April, 2024

By William Given

A horse seldom comes with a money-back guarantee. That is why it is so very important to complete your due diligence investigation before you make the purchase and take possession of a horse. And, while many equine professionals can help you evaluate the merits of a particular pedigree or performance achievements, only an experienced equine veterinarian can help you determine the physical condition and overall health of an animal.

Whether you are simply seeking a good pleasure mount, a breeding stallion or mare, or a performance event athlete, you stand the best chance of buying one that is more certain to meet your needs by first investing in a pre-purchase examination. The expense will be quite small in comparison to the long-term costs of keeping and caring for a horse, especially one that has developed health problems.

A pre-purchase exam is an assessment of the overall health and soundness of a horse on the day of the exam. The veterinarian’s job is to evaluate the risk associated with the purchase for the animal’s intended use. There are many reasons, such as past personal experience or a horse’s proven performance record, why a buyer might decide to make a purchase even with risky conditions or pass on an animal despite a clean bill of health.

Exams Are Custom-designed

The pre-purchase examination can be different for every buyer; this is because the horses are different. Your veterinarian will recommend procedures depending on the breed, the age of the horse and the intended use. For example: a mare being purchased for use as a brood mare will require a thorough reproductive evaluation along with some more routine procedures to ensure the mare is healthy overall. A horse being purchased for performance events will need a comprehensive physical exam that includes a battery of lameness tests.
Deciding exactly what should be included in the pre-purchase examination requires clear communication between you and your veterinarian. Here are some things you can do to increase the chances of having a successful and accurate pre-purchase examination:

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306 – March/April, 2024

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