Last Updated: 
2020-03-02

27.01  The Veterinary staff of the Commission shall be those veterinarians appointed by the Commission from time to time to officiate at thoroughbred race meetings; in these Rules all referred to as Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian.

27.01.01  The Official Veterinarians shall be those veterinarians appointed by the Associations and approved by the Registrar to officiate at extended racing meetings. At the discretion of the Registrar, the duties of the Official Veterinarian may be assumed by the Commission Veterinarian.

27.02  During the period of their employment the Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall not, without the approval of the Registrar, diagnose, treat or prescribe for any horse, for compensation or otherwise, except in case of emergency when they may do so without compensation of any kind except out of pocket expenses.

27.03  Any horse scratched by the Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian or a licensed Veterinarian may be placed on a seven (7) day list. Any horse that has been placed on the Veterinarian’s List may be required to work one half (½) mile at the discretion of the Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian. On the eighth day, the horse shall be eligible to be removed from the Veterinarian’s List and entered. Where entries are taken more than 72 hours in advance, a horse with the permission of the Commission Veterinarian may be entered. Any horse that has been on the Veterinarian’s List twice in a 30 day span shall be placed on the Veterinarian’s List and it shall be mandatory for the horse to work one half (½) mile to the satisfaction of the Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian, no matter how long the horse has been on the Veterinarian’s List or turned out.

27.04  A Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall be continuously in the paddock from the time the horses enter the paddock until they leave, and all horses shall be inspected by him/her. If in their opinion, any horse is not fit, sound and ready for racing, he/she shall recommend to the Stewards that it be scratched and the Stewards shall take such action as they deem fit.

27.05  A Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall inspect all horses at the starting point of each race. If in their opinion, any horse is not fit, sound and ready for racing, he/she shall recommend to the Stewards that it be scratched and the Stewards shall take such action as they deem fit.

27.05.01  A Commission Veterinarian and/or Official Veterinarian shall inspect all lead and outrider ponies on a regular basis (no less than monthly) during each meeting, after advising the person/s in charge. If, in the opinion of the Commission Veterinarian and/or Official Veterinarian, any pony is not fit, sound and ready for its work purpose, they shall recommend to the Stewards that the pony not work and shall only return to work when, in the opinion of the Commission Veterinarian and/or Official Veterinarian, it is fit and sound.

27.06  A Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall as quickly as possible inspect all horses regarding soundness which have been involved in a race or otherwise and he/she shall take appropriate action required in the examination of such horse/ horses.

27.07  If in the opinion of a Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian an injured horse should be destroyed, he/she shall destroy the horse quickly, humanely, and out of sight of the public unless any delay will prolong the suffering of the horse.

27.08    A Commission Veterinarians or Official Veterinarians shall keep a list to be called the Commission Veterinarians’ or Official Veterinarians’ List (otherwise referred to as the Vets’ List) upon which shall be entered the name of any horse which any Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian considers unfit, unsound or not ready for racing. During the time a horse’s name is on such list, it shall not race in Ontario, nor shall it be entered in any race, except that it may be nominated in a stakes race. Only a Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall remove a horse’s name from the Vets’ List and shall do so only when, in their opinion, the horse is fit, sound and ready for racing.

27.09    Any owner or trainer whose horse has been placed on the Commission Veterinarians’ or Official Veterinarians’ List may apply at any time to a Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian for their examination of such horse, and such examination shall be conducted within 24 hours of the request for it, provided that the horse is stabled at a convenient track.

27.09.01  A horse scratched from the official race program by a veterinarian and placed on the Commission Veterinarian’s List is ineligible to record an official workout within two days of having been a veterinarian scratch without the permission of the Official Veterinarian or Commission Veterinarian or the Stewards.

27.10  A Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall observe the horse so examined standing in its stall, walking and trotting. Provided, however, the horse shall be trotted on a racing-strip or worked on a racing-strip if requested by either the Veterinarian or horseperson.

27.11  Such horse shall be observed at the end of the work, if any, and cooling out, and the Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian shall then inform the horseperson that their horse is to remain on the Commission Veterinarians’ or Official Veterinarians’ List or when it will be removed from this list, as the case may be.

27.12  In the interest of equine health, and in connection with horses being shipped into any Ontario race track, a Commission Veterinarian or Official Veterinarian may examine any horse at their discretion after advising the trainer or person in charge of such horse of their intention to do so.

27.13  A veterinarian shall maintain and keep the records required pursuant to the Rules for not less than two clear years and shall make such records available to the Registrar, Stewards or their delegates upon request.

27.14  The records maintained and kept by a veterinarian shall include the name of the horse, the names of the owner and trainer, the date of the administration or prescription of the drug, substance or medication, and its nature.

27.15  Deleted.

27.16.01  A veterinarian shall:

  1. Determine from the trainer or owner what drugs, substances or medications are being administered to the horse before prescribing or administering any drug, substance or medication and shall maintain that information in his or her records;
  2. Determine from the trainer or owner prior to prescribing or administering any drug, substance or medication to a horse if the horse is or will be entered to race during the period of time in which any drug, substance or medication may affect the performance of the horse or could result in the issuance of a certificate of positive analysis, if an official sample were tested for that drug, substance or medication, or metabolite or derivative of that drug, substance or medication;
  3. Advise the trainer or owner:
    1. Of the detection limit for any drug, substance or medication identified in the Schedule of Drugs, as amended from time to time, published by the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency and the circumstances which would or could alter that detection limit set out in the Schedule of Drugs, including those related to condition of the horse, dosage, method of administration, format in which the medication is administered, or other circumstances;
    2. If no elimination guideline is provided for in the Schedule of Drugs, an estimate of the withdrawal time based upon the veterinarian’s professional opinion, after carrying out such research as is required for him or her to form a professional opinion, and shall maintain a copy of that advice in his or her records;
  4. Advise the trainer or owner of the potential or anticipated results of the administration of the drug, substance or medication on the horse and shall maintain a copy of that advice in his or her records; and
  5. Advise the trainer or owner of any potential or anticipated side effects of the administration of the drug, substance or medication, including any that may result from interaction with any other drug, substance or medication that the veterinarian knows, ought to know or has reason to believe is being administered to the horse, and shall maintain a copy of that advice in his or her records.

27.16.02  A veterinarian may comply with the requirements with 27.16.01(c), (d) and (e) if he or she provides the advice to the trainer in writing at least once every calendar year and there is no reason to provide the advice in writing again during that calendar year. The veterinarian, in deciding that there is no reason to provide the advice in writing again, shall take into account the health and safety of the horse, the integrity of racing, his or her knowledge of the practices and procedures of the trainer and the trainer’s employees, his or her knowledge and experience with the drug, substance or medication, and such other factors that the veterinarian, acting reasonably, considers relevant.

27.16.03  A veterinarian may comply with 27.16.01(a) and (b) if he or she obtains the required information from a bona fide representative of the trainer or owner who has been designated by the trainer or owner to act on his or her behalf and the veterinarian has no reason to believe otherwise. A veterinarian may comply with 27.16.01(c), (d) and (e) if he or she provides the advice to a bona fide representative of the trainer or owner who has been designated by the trainer or owner to act on his or her behalf and the veterinarian has no reason to believe otherwise.

27.16.04  A veterinarian shall only examine or treat a horse, or prescribe or administer a drug, substance or medication if he or she is in compliance with the requirements of the College of Veterinarians of Ontario, including, but not limited to, the Minimum Standards for Veterinary Facilities in Ontario, as amended from time to time.

27.17  A veterinarian may be held wholly or partially responsible if any drug, substance or medication administered or prescribed by him or her is a cause for:

  1. The issuance of a certificate of positive analysis under the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations under the Criminal Code (Canada);
  2. An excess level of total carbon dioxide for purposes of the Rules; or
  3. The detection of the antibodies of erythropoietin or darbepoetin for purposes of the Rules, or
  4. A violation of Rule 15.38.

and, if held wholly or partially responsible, may be subject to a monetary penalty and/or suspended by the Stewards.

27.18  Deleted.

27.19  When a horse has been pulled up during a race it must fulfil the following conditions before it is eligible to be entered to race:

  1. Have a recorded work;
  2. Must meet the conditions of Rules 27.03 and 27.08.

27.20.01  A veterinarian who dispenses a drug or medication shall label the container in which the drug or medication is dispensed with the following information:

  1. Name and strength of the drug or medication;
  2. Date and quantity prescribed;
  3. Name and address of the dispensing veterinarian;
  4. Name of the horse for which it is prescribed;
  5. Name of the trainer of the horse;
  6. Directions for use; and
  7. Detection limit determined in accordance with Rule 27.16.

27.20.02  In the event that a drug or medication is to be dispensed to multiple horses from a single container, such container shall be marked “BARN USE”, and will be exempt from items (ii) and (iv) above and replaced by a log, to include the following information:

  1. Name of the horse for which it is prescribed; and
  2. Date and quantity prescribed.

27.21   A veterinarian who owns, in whole or in part, a horse shall not treat another horse that is entered in a race in which the veterinarian’s horse is entered. If the veterinarian has treated or otherwise provided veterinarian services for a horse that is entered in a race after the horse was entered, the horse owned by the veterinarian, in whole or in part, is not eligible to race and shall be scratched.

Updates to Chapter 27: Commission Veterinarians, Official Veterinarians and Other Veterinarians

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