Guide to Australian Endurance Vetting


Duties of the Head Veterinarian

  • Must have a working knowledge of the current rules and have access to the current rulebook at the ride.
  • Liaise with the organising committee to form an appropriate veterinary team with adequate experience for the event.
  • Appoint a treatment veterinarian with adequate experience and training and who is familiar with the management and intensive care and the nature of the treatment and conditions which commonly affect endurance horses.
  • Find and notify the nearest referral hospital that the ride is taking place.
  • Meet and discuss with the chief steward on the day of the ride/or before to set up the veterinary ring to allow a good flow of horses in a safe manner and a suitable trot-out area.
  • Set up an appropriate area for treatment of horses, also an appropriate separate area for medication control.
  • Familiarise yourself with the protocols required if a horse catastrophe occurs with regard to medication control, euthanasia and post-mortem.
  • Supervise the veterinarian team during the event to ensure
    • A consistent veterinary examination
    • Suitable identification
    • Suitable shelter and nutrition
    • Rostering and rest periods especially during long rides
    • Look after the veterinary team, especially new vets, and refer any competitor issues to the chief steward
    • Coordinate the panel system for lameness and metabolic evaluations
    • Prepare for a pre-ride talk covering a number of areas
      • Acknowledge the ride committee
      • Introduce the vet team
      • Discuss the ride conditions i.e. terrain, weather, early in the season
      • Explain the vetting procedures and anything which may differ from normal procedures
    • Best conditioned judging
    • Post-ride talk and presentation of Best Conditioned awards

Duties of Line Veterinarians

  • Familiarise yourself with the AERA rule book
  • Ensure you are familiar with the vetting process
  • Equipment required- stethoscope, thermometer, stopwatch, pen (refer to checklist)
  • Familiarise yourself with the logbook layout and parameters
  • Familiarise yourself with the ride leg lengths
  • If in doubt ask questions or seek a second opinion

Duties of Treatment Veterinarians

  • Liaise with the head vet and organising committee in the lead up to the ride
  • Ensure adequate treatment supplies (refer to ride equipment checklist)
  • Ensure adequate treatment facilities on ride base (adequate shelter from the weather)
  • Ensure adequate referral options and these facilities are notified of the event