Thursday, Jul. 25, 2024

Veterinary Columnist

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Several changes happened to national and international medication rules last fall. You probably heard the controversy and discussion surrounding one or both, which isn’t surprising if you read this magazine or actively compete.

One of the issues is the U.S. Equestrian Federation single non-steroidal anti-inflammatory rule. This is a discussion about reducing two allowed NSAIDs (such as bute, Banamine, etc.) given to our horses down to one.

An article in the October 8, 2009, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine has reminded me of an issue that has bothered me for at least a couple of decades.  While horse owners seem more than happy to give their horses any number of supplements, the fact is that, no matter what the supplements promise, horse owners can’t really know if the supplements do any good.

In some ways, being responsible for a horse is like being responsible for a very young child. Neither patient can speak for himself, and each relies on someone else to make his decisions for him. So, when there’s a problem—be it with a horse or with a child—you’re the one in charge. At these times, the question that often comes up is, “Do I need to call the doctor?”

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