Do you do them? If so, how? I can't imagine you'd get much more done than making sure TPR are normal - I mean, you wouldn't do flexions or xrays or the other usual stuff. So when buying a foal, do you just buy it and hope for the best?
We had the Vet do eyes, lungs, heart, checked for hernia and if old enough, both testicles on a colt. Just making sure foal had no issues to begin with. If the animal has basic problems in his body, he is never going to develop as WE need them to, he is not what we want to buy. So a good once over by the Vet tells you that, lets you go to the other parts you consider important. After that you just have to look at foal in motion to see stride length, body proportions, to figure what the finished horse will look like.
Our foal had lovely gaits, good bone, proportionate body parts for his 3month age, friendly and not scared of strangers. Got along well with his slightly older brother, equally pushy, behaved well (respectful) to other horses in the field as a baby should who is well horse-socialized. Husband was very happy with him, and we went back in 6 weeks to pick colt up after weaning was done.
He is STILL a nice colt, gets along well with the geldings, but plays hard at being a stallion because he is not gelded yet. The geldings help keep him squelched mostly, colt knows his place in the herd of four, which is LAST! Colt is easy to handle, since he is handled twice a day. His trot is developing well, really pretty to watch the colt gallop with the big horses, lovely motion. Husband has a good eye for movement in horses!
PA, where the State motto is: "If it makes sense, we don't do it!".
Hopefully the vet would be able to pick up on other things about the foal that you or I might miss since they see hundreds more babies than we do.
I would have the vet take a sample for a fecal, pull blood for a routine screening and make sure everything is "closed up" underneath. I once had a friend who bought a six month old foal without benefit of a vet check, then sold him within the next couple of months. After the nw owners took possession the poor little guy was out in the field and his insides came spilling out--he had to be euthanized. This could have all been prevented if anyone would have just taken the time to look!
I'm sure the vet knows what to look for--isn't that why we pay them the big bucks? Nontheless, it doesn't hurt to have your own checklist of thngs you want to have looked at.....
"Good gardening is very simple, really. You just have to learn to think like a plant." ~Barbara Damrosch~