On July 20, 2020, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) issued a Notice to Industry concerning a number of horses in Ontario who have received a positive test for capsaicin over the past several weeks. As noted, the AGCO’s priority is to conduct a fair and independent investigation to ensure the ongoing safety and integrity of horse racing in Ontario, as well as the health and welfare of equine athletes.
The AGCO Equine Drug Unit’s preliminary investigation has revealed a potential source: a product known as ZEV (Lot#190104 Exp:01-2022), an oral product used for the treatment of respiratory conditions - has tested positive for capsaicin and related compounds. It should be noted that capsaicin is not included in the list of active ingredients for ZEV.
Trainers and owners are advised to always use caution with all products administered to a horse. Not all ingredients which could result in positive tests may be listed on a product, and ZEV may not be the only source of a positive test.
For more information:
Equine Drug Unit
Chris Bennett, Detective Sergeant
Investigation Enforcement Bureau
Ontario Provincial Police