Book Excerpt: Keeping Records on Your Horse

Editor's Note: This is an excerpt from Understanding Equine Preventive Medicine by Bradford G. Bentz, VMD. This book is available from

An important component of practicing preventive medicine and care for your horse(s) includes maintaining complete and accurate records on their health care and their treatment and management practices.

Good health records should include:

  • Horse's name(s), with names of sire and dam, breed, and registration numbers
  • Identification: sex, color, markings, tattoos, brands, scars, and weight and height
  • Foaling date and history
  • Health history with dates
  • Vaccinations
  • Dewormings
  • Illnesses and injuries
  • Dental examinations and care administered
  • Foot care
  • Physical examinations
  • Diagnostic tests run: Coggins tests, EVA testing, etc.
  • Any diagnosed allergies
  • Feeding program: frequency and amounts, supplements utilized
  • Performance activity and records
  • Breeding history and reproductive examinations
  • Rectal palpations
  • Vaginal exam
  • Caslick's surgeries
  • Application of artificial lighting
  • Uterine biopsies and cultures
  • Dates of estrus
  • Hormonal therapy
  • Teasing record
  • Breeding: method, to whom, by whom
  • Foaling dates: details of foaling, problems, etc.; growth rate
  • Boarding history
  • Owners: names, address, when, and where

About the Author

Bradford G. Bentz, VMD, MS, Dipl. ACVIM, ABVP (equine)

Brad Bentz, VMD, Dipl. ACVIM, ABVP, ACVECC, owns Bluegrass Equine Performance and Internal Medicine in Lexington, Ky., where he specializes in advanced internal medicine and critical care focused on helping equine patients recuperate at home. He’s authored numerous books, articles, and papers about horse health and currently serves as commission veterinarian for the Kentucky State Racing Commission.

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