Pre-Purchase Exams

Don't skip the pre-purchase exam

Pre-Purchase Equine Exams

Purchasing a horse is a big investment - in time, money and emotion. This is why we recommend having the horse's current condition and soundness assessed. Rather than a pass-fail type exam, the purpose of the pre-purchase exam is to help a buyer make a more informed decision. Exams can be as extensive as the potential buyer desires, however, the basis of a pre-purchase is a thorough, complete physical examination, as well as a lameness examination. Additional diagnostics include radiographs and ultrasound. It's ideal for the purchaser or trainer to be present. If they are unable to be present, the purchaser should be available by phone so any abnormal findings can be discussed immediately. Whether you are buying a horse to hit the trails or the show ring, we highly recommend a pre-purchase exam.

Pre-Purchase Exams


Schedule A Pre-Purchase Exam

If you're in the market for a new horse, contact us today to schedule an equine pre-purchase exam. We'll evaluate your horse's health and athletic soundness so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not to purchase them. Horses are a big investment, so it's important to make sure you're getting the right one! Get in touch with us at Countryside today to get started.

Contact Us Today!

Image of horse jumping over obstacle

Why Consider a Pre-purchase Exam?

  • Expose health concerns, pre-existing conditions and potential management issues.
  • Have these issues and concerns fully explained so you can better determine if a horse is suitable for your needs.

Pre-Purchase Horse Exam Prep Tips

As the equine buyer, there are a few steps that you can take to prepare for a horse's pre-purchase exam and ensure it goes quickly and smoothly. First, request the horse's full health history from the seller — everything from vaccinations to deworming to x-rays — and have them send it to your examining veterinarian, such as Countryside. Then, it's important to ask yourself a few questions to determine if this purchase is the right investment for you, such as:

  • What will I use the horse for?

  • How long will I use or own the horse?

  • What are deal-breaker issues that the horse could have?

  • What is my budget for the exam?

  • Am I willing to pay for additional diagnostics?


What Issues Might an Examiner Come Across?

If you're having a horse assessed before purchase, there are a few issues that the examiner might come across. Here are just a few examples to be aware of:

  • Lameness: This includes issues with the horse's joints, including ligament and tendon tears, fractures, and inflammation. Untreated, certain lameness problems can lead to chronic conditions such as arthritis.

  • Infections: Horses can be susceptible to a number of infections, so it's important to rule out any potential health risks before purchase.

  • Parasites: A pre-purchase exam can also help to rule out any parasites or other health concerns.

Nutrition: Horses require a specific diet in order to stay healthy, and an examiner can help you make sure that the horse you're considering purchasing is on the right track nutritionally.

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What does a pre-purchase exam include?

  • Detailed health exam – eyes, heart, lungs, gut sounds and teeth
  • A muscular/skeleton evaluation of swellings and old scars
  • Checking for pain areas, digital manipulation and hoof testers
  • Flexions and lunging
  • Testing for neurological soundness
  • Draw and hold blood for potential drug screening (Countryside stores for 30 days).

Additional recommended checks include:

  • Radiographs
  • Ultrasound

Choose Countryside for Your Equine Exam Needs

If you're in the market for a new horse, it's important to have them checked out by a veterinarian first. At Countryside Veterinary Services in Covington, we offer comprehensive pre-purchase exams to fully assess a horse's condition and soundness before purchasing. Contact us today to schedule an equine pre-purchase exam — we'll be happy to help you get started on the process of finding your new horse.