Pre-purchase exams are designed to help you make one of the most important decisions in owning a horse – which one to buy. Whether this horse is to be a top level show horse or a child’s first pony, a pre-purchase is crucial to evaluate overall health condition, as well as many other considerations; vices, behavioral issues, etc.
Pre-purchase exams can range from a brief overall health check with basic flexion tests to a complete exam including x-rays, ultrasounds and endoscopy. Each buyer must assess their degree of risk-tolerance when deciding how extensive of an exam they want. The more in depth the exam is, the less chance there is of unpleasant surprises later on.
A thorough discussion with your veterinarian prior to the pre-purchase exam is important to determine each buyer’s unique situation. It is important to choose a veterinarian whom you trust, who is knowledgeable with the breed and type of horse and with the sport or use the horse is intended to perform.
During the exam your doctor will explain findings and recommend additional tests and images based on their exam results. Most important, your veterinarian will assess the findings and discuss any concerns regarding current or possible future problems that could affect the horse’s performance or their intended use. No veterinarian has a crystal ball to predict the future, but we have veterinarians with experience and expertise in multiple disciplines and will give you a knowledgeable assessment of the horse’s suitability for your needs.