Home 5 Ag Stories Horse owners need to have more horse sense about meds

Horse owners need to have more horse sense about meds

Horse in barn at Iowa State Fair (Photo by Dustin Hoffmann)

While we don’t see horses doing the fieldwork like in the days of our older generations, they are still found on many farms across the Midwest. Known for their companionship and the joy they bring riders, they are also at the center of the collective attention of Americans as one lucky horse is now on the path to try and capture racing’s triple crown.

Now, some owners are being warned about the use of painkillers for horses without seeking the advice of a veterinarian. This is not only a bad animal health practice but also a very dangerous prospect for the operation. Veterinarians are warning of the dangers that could be faced.

According to a recent survey, twenty-seven percent of horse owners were buying drugs, such as painkillers, for the horses without first seeking the treatment of a veterinarian. Many owners were keeping supplies of the meds on hand for future use. Dr. Deb Sellon talks about the dangers, even in the hands of experienced owners who feel they are doing what is in the best interest of the animal.

Dr. Sellon says that there are also drug abusers who are getting their hands on horse painkillers to mix into a very deadly cocktail. This puts horse owners at risk of having their supplies of medicines stolen.

Dr. Sellon recommends not keeping a supply on hand that can be stolen, rather just obtain what you need through a veterinarian. She also says that if you have a supply on hand, that is fine, just know how to safely store it and understand the risks involved to you.