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The pre-purchase examination is an important service provided by most performance-horse veterinarians and is where doctor meets detective.

Pre-Purchase Examinations

Miller & Associate veterinarians are available on your farm for pre-purchase examinations, and experienced technical staff members are available to handle horses so the client can observe and discuss the findings with the veterinarian.

Miller & Associate veterinarians methodically examine the horse through a variety of procedures that include a clinical exam of the eyes, heart, lungs, gastrointestinal and musculoskeletal systems. Then, the veterinarian observes the horse in motion, taking care to look for lameness while trotting on firm and soft ground, on the longe line and under saddle.

Flexion tests allow the veterinarian to check the health of the horse’s joints, and the results may indicate the need for further testing for a potential problem.

Imaging, particularly digital radiology, provides the veterinarian objective information about the medical condition of the prospective purchase and are routinely taken as part of the exam. Radiographic images often include the hocks, knees, ankles and hooves.

A full set of X-rays is also valuable as a baseline for you to compare changes over time and better diagnose any future issues.

Other routine pre-purchase tests include: Coggin’s test, blood chemistry, drug screening and scoping if a respiratory noise is heard during examination.