Pre-Purchase Vetting Guidelines

The aim of the pre-purchase examination (PPE) is to carry out a thorough clinical examination on behalf of a potential purchaser to identify and assess factors of a veterinary nature that could prejudice a horse’s suitability for its intended use. It is an assessment of the horse at the time of the examination to help the potential purchaser make an informed decision as to whether or not to continue with their purchase, it is not a guarantee of a horse’s suitability for the intended purpose.

Stage Two Vetting & Stage Five Vetting

 

We provide two levels of Pre-Purchase Examinations:

 

5 Stage Pre-Purchase Examination

 

Yorkshire Equine Practice recommend the 5 Stage Examination as the most appropriate for any prospective purchaser.

 

Approximately 2 Hours

  • A full clinical examination of the horse at rest (this includes a thorough palpation of all limbs, listening to the heart and lungs and an examination of the horse’s eyes in a dark stable.)

  • The Trot Up – Observation of the horse walking and trotting in hand in a straight line on a hard level surface, including flexion tests. The horse is normally also trotted on a small diameter circle on a firm surface to detect subtle lameness issues.

  • The Exercise Phase - Observation of the horse performing strenuous exercise, normally under saddle. This allows further evaluation of the way the horse moves and assessment of the heart and respiratory systems’ response to exertion.

  • A period of rest  - T·    The horse is rested in the stable for a period of time to give time for any stiffness induced by the exercise to become apparent. The horse’s markings are normally recorded at this time and the passport examined.

  • Second Trot Up - A second examination of the horse at trot in hand.

  • Final Assessment - An optional blood sample can be taken at the purchaser’s request, which will be stored for six months and can be used, if concerns arise after purchase, to test for substances that may have masked certain conditions

2 Stage Pre-Purchase Examination

 

The 2 Stage Examination can only be performed once a disclaimer has been signed, acknowledging the limitations of this examination

 

Approximately 1 Hour

 

  • A full clinical examination of the horse at rest (this includes  a thorough palpation of all limbs, listening to the heart and lungs and an examination of the horse’s eyes in a dark stable.)

  • The Trot Up - Observation of the horse walking and trotting in hand in a straight line on a hard level surface, including flexion tests. The horse is normally also trotted on a small diameter circle on a firm surface to detect subtle lameness issues.

When considering a Pre-Purchase Examination:

 

Can I use the vendor's (seller's) vet?

 

We will advise the purchaser if the horse is already known to Yorkshire Equine Practice. It is up to the purchaser if they wish to go ahead with the examination.

 

Insurance companies

 

Insurance companies can vary in their requirements. If you are planning on purchasing insurance for your horse it is worth checking with your insurance company before you proceed to make sure you get the cover you want. In some instances, radiographs or other procedures may be required by your insurance company.

 

Does the horse have a valid passport?

 

It is now illegal to sell a horse if it does not have a valid passport. Make the vendor aware of this and ask them to have the passport present at the vetting.

When was the horse last shod?

 

We prefer the horse to have been shod within the previous 4 weeks so that loose shoes or over-long feet do not compromise the examination. Likewise we prefer them not to have been shod within the last 48 hours as we sometimes see problems arise from changes in foot balance.

Is the horse fit to be examined?

 

A thorough five-stage vetting cannot be performed on an unhandled horse.If the horse suffers from any lameness, illness or limb swelling in the days leading up to the vetting it is likely these will be detected on the examination and could deem the horse unsuitable.It is preferable to delay the vetting until the horse is back to normal.

Are the premises suitable for an examination to take place?

 

We will need a stable, preferably one where reduced or lower light levels are possible for full examination of the eyes. There needs to be a level firm surface for the trot-up and somewhere suitable for the strenuous exercise phase. A field is not a suitable level firm surface for the trot-up. There also needs to be someone to ride the horse if a 5 stage examination is being performed.

 

Terms and Conditions for Pre-examinations

 

All our Veterinarians are experienced in carrying out Pre-purchase examinations. We strongly advise potential purchasers to read the new BEVA guidelines on Pre-purchase examinations as these provide a thorough overview of the procedures involved and what can be expected.

Note that a vetting is not the same as an insurance examination.

It is quite possible to "pass" a vetting yet later to find that insurance proves difficult because of the findings. The vetting assesses a horse's suitability for the purchaser's intended use while the insurance companies are more interested in making exclusions on anything that is not strictly normal. It is always wise to obtain insurance cover before purchase, rather than afterwards, in case any exclusion might change your opinion as to whether or not to buy.

 

Once a PPE has been carried out we will issue a certificate to the purchaser which may be required for insurance purposes once the sale is complete. 

Additional Options:

 

In addition to a 2-stage of 5-stage vetting you may also request additional examinations and diagnostic tests to be carried out, including: 

  • Blood sample for storage

  • Upper-airway endoscopy

  • X-rays

If at the time of booking your PPE you have any specific concerns regarding previous conditions/injuries the horse may have suffered from, please do let us know and the veterinary surgeon in attendance can advise if further tests can and should be carried out. 

 

If you would like to request a vetting please submit the Pre-Purchase Vetting request form and we will get in touch.