OBJECTIVE To investigate risk factors for the development of pasture- and endocrinopathy-associated laminitis (PEAL) in horses and ponies in North America.
DESIGN Case-control study.
ANIMALS 199 horses with incident cases of PEAL and 351 horses from 2 control populations (healthy horses [n = 198] and horses with lameness not caused by laminitis ) that were evaluated in North America between January 2012 and December 2015 by veterinarian members of the American Association of Equine Practitioners.
PROCEDURES North American members of the American Association of Equine Practitioners were contacted to participate in the study, and participating veterinarians provided historical data on incident cases of PEAL, each matched with a healthy control and a lameness control. Conditional logistic regression analysis was used to compare data on PEAL-affected horses with data on horses from each set of controls.
RESULTS Horses with an obese body condition (ie, body condition score ≥ 7), generalized or regional adiposity (alone or in combination), preexisting endocrinopathy, or recent (within 30 days) glucocorticoid administration had increased odds of developing PEAL, compared with horses that did not have these findings.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE The present study identified several risk factors for PEAL that may assist not only in managing and preventing this form of laminitis, but also in guiding future research into its pathogenesis.