Dr. Jeff Blea

Jeff Blea, DVM, On The Santa Anita Crisis, Medication And Racing’s Survival

As a veterinarian practicing at Santa Anita, the last few months have been the most difficult of my career.  I’ve experienced grief for the horses who have been euthanized, and frustration with the spike in racing and training injuries.  The survivability of the sport in my state is on the line. But this crisis is […]

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Regulatory Vet Conferees Discuss Voided Claims, Gate Scratches, Vet’s Lists

An emphasis on applying best practices and achieving best outcomes marked Day 2 of the inaugural Regulatory/Official Veterinary Continuing Education conference (#RegVetCE), presented by the NTRA Safety & Integrity Alliance and the Racing Medication & Testing Consortium (RMTC), Tuesday at Keeneland in Lexington, Ky. The morning was highlighted by a spirited and far-reaching discussion on […]

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Bisphosphonates, Fatality Risk Factors Hot Topics At ARCI Welfare Forum

Bisphosphonates — a class of drugs that prevent the bone-density loss —might have some therapeutic value for older racehorses but speakers at the Conference on Equine Welfare and Racing Integrity warned of the potential harm caused by such treatments for young horses such yearlings and 2-year-olds.   That was among the takeaways from Wednesday’s Animal Welfare […]

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Three Years In, North American Association Of Racetrack Vets Maintains Critical Approach To Medication Reform

Medication reform in Thoroughbred racing has long been an alphabet soup. There’s the ARCI (Association of Racing Commissioners International), the RMTC (Racing Medication and Testing Consortium), the AAEP (American Association of Equine Practitioners), and more recently, the HSUS (Humane Society of the United States), among other organizations stirring the kettle. The past three years, one […]

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Everything Old Is New Again: Examining Thyroxine

Off-label use of thyroxine (sold as Thyro-L, Levoxine Powder, or Levo-Powder) has been popular among trainers since the 1970s, but recent revelations from leading Thoroughbred conditioners about blanket use of the product in their barns has veterinarians and regulators concerned. When used according to label instructions, levothyroxine supplements are intended to correct hypothyroidism—a condition in […]

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