Objective—To assess awareness, perceived relevance, and acceptance of surveillance and infection control practices at a large animal referral hospital among referring veterinarians and clients who sent horses to the facility for veterinary care.
Sample—57 referring veterinarians and 594 clients.
Procedures—A 15-question survey targeting Salmonella enterica as an important pathogen of interest in horses was sent to clients who sent ≥ 1 horse to the University of Florida Large Animal Hospital for veterinary care during July 1, 2007, through July 1, 2011, and to veterinarians who had referred horses to the same hospital prior to July 1, 2011. Responses were summarized with descriptive statistics. The χ2 test and the Wilcoxon rank sum test were used to examine associations among variables of interest.
Results—Survey response rates were low (57/467 [12%] for veterinarians and 594/3,095 [19%] for clients). Significantly more (35/56 [63%]) veterinarians than clients (227/585 [39%]) were aware that the hospital operates a surveillance and infection control program. Most veterinarians (56/57 [98%]) and clients (554/574 [97%]) indicated that sampling and testing of horses to detect Salmonella shedding in feces at admission and during hospitalization was justified. In addition, on a scale of 1 (not important) to 10 (very important), veterinarians and clients indicated it was very important (median score, 10 [interquartile range, 8 to 10] for both groups) that a referral hospital operates a surveillance and infection control program.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Survey results indicated that awareness of hospital surveillance and infection control practices was higher among veterinarians than clients, and these practices were considered relevant and well-accepted among participant veterinarians and clients.
Objective—To evaluate horseshoe characteristics
and high-speed exercise history as risk factors for catastrophic
musculoskeletal injury in Thoroughbred
Animals—377 horses (37,529 race starts).
Procedure—Shoe characteristics included material,
toe grab height, heel traction device, pads, and rim
shoes. Racing variables were obtained from a computerized
database. Forty-three horses that had a
musculoskeletal injury and then failed to race or train
for 6 months (cases) and 334 noninjured horses from
the same race in which a horse was injured (controls)
were compared regarding risk factors.
Results—Overall, 98% of race starts were associated
with aluminum shoes, 85% with toe grabs, 32% with
pads, and 12% with rims on forelimb horseshoes.
Among 43 horses with musculoskeletal injury, sex
(geldings), an extended interval since last race, and
reduced exercise during the 30 or 60 days preceding
injury were risk factors for catastrophic injury. Odds
of injury in racehorses with toe grabs on front shoes
were 1.5 times the odds of injury in horses without
toe grabs, but this association was not significant
(95% confidence interval, 0.5 to 4.1).
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest
that horses that return to racing after an extended
period of reduced exercise are at high risk of catastrophic
musculoskeletal injury. Results regarding the
use of toe grabs as a possible risk factor for catastrophic
injury were inconclusive because the probability
of declaring (in error) that use of toe grabs was
associated with an increased risk of musculoskeletal
injury (eg, odds ratio > 1.0) was 38%. (Am J Vet Res 2005;66:1314–1320)