Five Stage Vetting

Five Stage Vetting

5 Stage Vetting

Stage 1 – Preliminary examination

This is the methodical examination of the horse to assess general appearance and condition. It includes examination of the teeth, the resting heart, the eyes, the skin, the limbs and feet, and flexion of the limb joints to reveal pain or limitation of movement.

Stage 2 – Trotting up

The animal is walked and trotted on hard, level ground in order to detect gross abnormalities of gait and action. Flexion tests are usually done on all limbs in turn and the horse may be lunged in circles on a firm surface in either direction if facilities dictate.

Stage 3 – Strenuous exercise

The animal is given sufficient strenuous exercise (1) to make it breathe deeply and rapidly so that any unusual breathing sounds may be heard; (2) to increase the action of the heart so that abnormalities may be more easily detected; and (3) to tire the animal so that strains or injuries may be revealed by stiffness or lameness after a period of rest.

Stage 4 – A period of rest

The horse is allowed to stand quietly for a period. During this time the breathing and the heart are checked as they return to their resting levels.

Stage 5 – The second trot and foot examination

The horse is walked and trotted again, turned sharply and backed, in order to reveal abnormalities exacerbated by the strenuous exercise stage.

A part vetting comprises on stages 1 and 2 and is sometimes requested for lower value purchases. In this case the purchaser will be required by the clinic to sign a form agreeing to a limited examination and recognizing the limitations of this part vetting procedure.

Do remember that a pre-purchase examination is only a guide to help you the purchaser make up your mind. We cannot detect every defect on a horse and a pre-purchase examination does not provide a guarantee of future soundness and suitability. We encourage clients to discuss fully with the examining vet prior to his visit so any worries can be discussed fully as well as an idea of future use be obtained.

  • To book a pre-purchase examination, the Purchaser or their agent must contact the clinic (not the Vendor) and the following details given:
  • Purchaser’s name, address and full contact phone numbers
  • Vendor’s name, address and full contact phone numbers
  • Preferred date(s) for examination and location
  • Preferred vet to carry out the examination
  • Full details of horse including name, stated age, sex, height, colour, etc
  • Required use of horse
  • Value of the horse
  • Type of vetting (2 or 5 stage)
  • Any special diagnostic aids ( radiography, ultrasonography, etc)
  • Whether purchaser will be attending in person when horse vetted ( we encourage this practice )
  • Sometimes as a result of a clinical examination some defects may be found which warrant further investigation and these will be discussed fully by the examining vet.
  • We always take a blood sample for detecting the presence of painkillers, anti-inflammatory or sedative drugs, when a 5 stage vetting is requested. This sample is stored for a minimum of 6 weeks and only tested if the purchaser specifically requests within this time.
  • For insurance purposes, mortality insurance requires a 2 stage examination and full lose of use, requires a 5 stage examination.

Contact Stables Equine Practice

Contact Stables Equine Practice
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