Would someone please comment on what all you like done on a pre purchase exam, when buying a Peruvian. What leg and hoof xrays would you ask for by the vet?
I guess just wondering how detailed would you get with the pre purchase?


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Hi Kat,

For pre-purchase exams I like to have a very thourough check of the horse, and if it is at all possible, I like to be present to see that all the things I ask for are really done. If I cannot be present I always have someone whom I trust implicity to be present in my stead. I always, always ask for the following:

A complete vet health check & pre-purchase exam which should include:

a) palpation (mares) to see that ovaries and uterus are normal, and a
complete breeding history if she has already had foals
b) a swab taken of the vagina and uterus for culture to ensure no disease
is present
c) stallions: breeding history, which should include any problems in handling
during breeding season, a swab taken of the penis to be sure he carries no
sexually transmitted disease
d) x-rays of legs for hairline fractures or other injuries
e) check the feet thouroughly for thrush, bruising, quarter cracks, corns, etc.
f) flexion test for dsld and the follow up ultra sound to make sure that the
horse, in real time, is not affected with the disease
g) if I can't ride the horse myself then I have someone who is a GOOD rider
( by that I mean someone who really knows how to ride a Peruvian Paso in
proper equitation and who understands the difference between the gaits) to
ride the horse so I can tell if it has any sore points under saddle which do
not always present themselves under palpation, to see if it has overreach,
depth of thread and is smooth. Surest way to know that is to ride the horse
h) have a good farrier check the feet for any imbalances in trimming which can
and do, affect movement and gait.

The reason I ask for all this before I put my name to the dotted line is that once you have the horse that's pretty much it...it is difficult to go back and say 'Oh I don't like it for this or that reason"...been there, done that and it doesn't work. If you are going to buy a horse the best thing to do is have your list, tell the present owner you will have your vet of choice accompany you to his/her ranch and do all the things I have just mentioned. If the present owner hesitates or will not allow the ultra sound or xray to be done, I would not hesitate to say I am not interested any longer in that particular horse. Believe me, the money spent in the pre- purchase exam will save you a great deal of heartache later and a bigger loss of dollars than what you will ever spend on the pre purchase exam. Being an equine appraiser I have done pre purchase appraisals to help propsective owners evaluate the market worth of the horse and have seen many things in the examination of the horse that I would not hesitate to have a vet look at, and have told the buyer that in my report. It is crucial (in my estimation) that the more thourough the pre purchase exam, the better the chance of getting a strong, healthy horse that will be worth what you spend on it. If you do not do it, then its the old adgae, "Buyer Beware".

Hope this helps.

Best, Pam J
Thanks Pam....that is very helpful. My only Peruvian had to be retired because of ringbone, and with the concern with dsld..I really want the exam done correct.


I would also see if the parents are on site and to take a real good look at them. Seeing the grandparents would be even better. Look at their fetlocks and pasterns to see if there is any swelling, even a small amount of swelling like windpuffs could be the beginning signs of dsld. Definately a flexion test and ultra sound, but the only problem with this is that even if a horse has dsld and is not affected by it yet the test results can come up negative and the horse could become affected later on and test positive. So, if you can see the parents soundness and take a good look at their fetlocks and legs to note any swelling or dropping of their pasterns that would be a more acurate proof of negative for dsld. I'm looking right now at a gelding whose lines have only been in the States for two generations and this gelding's father who is now thirty years old is still well built and sound that the owners grandchildren still ride him!


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