Poor performance is a difficult area to address in our ridden horses, and can vary from a racehorse not living up to its potential, the competition horse not achieving its previous level of performance, or the pony club pony which has suddenly started to display undesirable behaviour. The causes of poor performance are wide and variable, and require an experienced equine veterinarian to determine. The most common culprits in high performance horses are lameness and respiratory and cardiac conditions, but other concerns such as dental disease, endocrine (hormonal) disorders, reproductive issues, neurological complaints and even saddle fit, to name a few, can be responsible.
Both our clinics are equipped to thoroughly assess poor performance cases, with radiography (x-rays), ultrasound, endoscopy, laboratory based blood testing and many other diagnostics. Our Echunga clinic also has purpose built lameness work up facilities (including an arena for ridden work if required). In cases where a cardiac (heart) cause of the poor performance is suspected, we can offer an in-house ECG (electrocardiogram), which is also often required by the stewards in racehorses following a heart abnormality detected on track.
As part of our ability to diagnose and treat sports medicine issues in horses, we also offer collection, processing and injection of platelet rich plasma (PRP) at both clinics. This exciting autologous (made from the horse’s own blood) biologic treatment is usually used for tendon and ligament injuries but has also been employed in damaged joints, wounds and other areas of healing tissue.