In October 2001, a survey was conducted about cavities formed within the hoof wall (called GIDOH in Japanese) of racehorses at the Ritto and Miho Training Centres, which are managed by the Japan Racing Association (JRA). Gidoh is defined as a progressive cavity within the deep layers between the stratum medium and stratum internum. A total of 148 out of 5386 surveyed horses (2.75 per cent) were affected.
Reasons for performing study: There is increasing evidence that exercise early in life has a positive effect on musculoskeletal health. At present, there is little whole population research investigating the effect of racing as 2-year-olds on future racing career.
Objectives: To investigate the association between attaining training milestones as 2-year-olds with length of career and racing success in Thoroughbred horses in New Zealand.
Reasons for performing study: Although fractures of the metacarpal and metatarsal condyles are the most common long-bone fractures of Thoroughbred horses in training, limited data on variations in morphology and incidence have been published. Additionally, grouped analyses of previous studies from the UK and USA would permit comparison between study groups and the creation of a substantial pool of international data.
Objective—To investigate the effect of exercise during yearling sales preparation on the risk of interruptions during training in Thoroughbred racehorses. Animals—114 Thoroughbred racehorses. Procedures—Information regarding the daily exercise of yearlings during sales preparation was obtained prospectively from a convenience sample of stud farms. Yearlings were followed to entry into race training, and subsequently, daily training information was recorded until the end of the racing season.
Objective—To determine major causes of death and the anatomic location of musculoskeletal injuries in Quarter Horse racehorses in California.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Animals—314 Quarter Horse racehorses with musculoskeletal injuries that were necropsied through the California Horse Racing Board Postmortem Program from 1990 to 2007.
Reasons for performing study: Superficial digital flexor (SDF) tendinopathy is a common injury in Thoroughbred horses racing over hurdles. Identification of risk factors may allow the introduction of measures to minimise the incidence of this injury.
Objective: To identify risk factors for SDF tendinopathy in Thoroughbred horses in hurdle races in the UK.
Lameness is the most commonly diagnosed condition in equine veterinary practice. To examine whether variations in management and husbandry strategies in riding schools could influence wastage due to orthopaedic injury schools with high (HUIO) or low (LUIO) insurance claims for orthopaedic injuries (as an indirect measure of wastage) were compared epidemiologically using an extensive questionnaire and field study visits.
Epidemiological studies into the risk factors for naturally-occurring equine laminitis are limited. There are a small number of such studies, although the results are inconsistent and remain disputed. The reasons for the conflicting results remain unclear. The aim of this review was to critically evaluate previous research in order to identify publications which provide the best evidence of risk factors for naturally-occurring equine laminitis. A systematic review of English language publications was conducted using MEDLINE (1950–2010), CAB Direct (1910–2010) and IVIS (1997–2010).
Reasons for performing study: Sudden death adversely affects racehorse welfare, jockey safety and the public perception of horseracing.
Objective: To describe the risk of racing-associated sudden death in Thoroughbred racehorses in the UK from 2000 to 2007, to identify whether there were risk factors uniquely associated with sudden death and to improve the understanding of the pathogenesis of racing-associated sudden death by identification of risk factors for such cases.
Reasons for performing study: To determine if scapular fractures occur in racehorses with distinctive characteristics.
Objectives: To test the hypothesis that Thoroughbred (TB) and Quarter Horse (QH) racehorses with a scapular fracture have similar characteristics that are different from those of their respective racetrack populations.