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BEVA views the recent announcement by the FEI that they are to adopt a “Progressive List” of medications that are permissible for horses in competitions to be an extremely retrograde step for equine welfare. This decision obscures the distinction between therapy and subjecting unsound horses to the stresses of competition. Furthermore, we have grave concerns that horses competing whilst under treatment with pain-relieving medicines, are at an increased risk of musculoskeletal lesions progressing to catastrophic injuries.
We see this announcement as a backward step for the development of equestrian sport that is contrary to the public aspiration of drug-free competition. We would strongly encourage a rational review of the available evidence and if necessary new research to try and formulate a more scientific basis for these regulations.
Henry Tremaine, BEVA Honorary Information Officer.