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The great drug debate

One area that has been talked around is the area of withdrawal times.  This
summer my horse suffered a corneal abrasion.  My vet recommended in addition
to two ointments, that I put him on bute for two days.  Since I had a race
in less than two weeks, and had been informed the preceding year by a vet
doing AERC drug testing that bute can be found for up to a month, I told my
vet that I wouldn't follow his advice.  He said that he felt that a drug
policy that required bute to be withdrawn more than 2 days, was ridiculous
as it surely was below therapeutic levels at that time.  I believe he said
that the AHSA rule was either one or two days.  If the AERC would publish
levels for allowed amounts of common, normal useful drugs, we could do a
better job of knowing when we could and could not compete after helping our
horse with a disease.  Other drugs could be handled on a case by case basis
as all positives are handled now.  Any legitimate drug showing up repeatedly
could be added to the list.  Yes, I am aware that drawing a line in the sand
can produce problems when an animal tests right on the line, but we do the
same in many other areas (a horse that finishes 24 hours and 1 second after
starting doesn't complete the Tevis even though it could be argued that the
clock was wrong or whatever).  Notice I am not advocating that the AERC
recommend withdrawal times.  That is between the rider and his/her vet.
Blood tests show levels, not withdrawal times.
Ed Hauser
Sisu Farm
1140 37th St.
Hudson, WI 54016
(715) 386-0465

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