The Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) reminds all members of the harness racing community to be on the alert for any hot weather effects on horses.
ORC Official Veterinarians and racing officials at all racetracks will remind participants to take the necessary precautions and steps to cool horses. Tracks are reminded they need to maintain adequate water facilities to cool down horses after warming up or racing.
As well, the ORC suggests that racing officials, horsepeople representatives, track management and the Official Veterinarian share information and any concerns about weather conditions impacting racing. There is an established policy of allowing a trainer to scratch their horse should the trainer be concerned about the particular condition of the animal due to weather.
Information on the care of horses can be found on ORC posters which are displayed in racetrack paddocks, test barns and the race offices/ORC licensing areas at all Ontario racetracks.
More information on caring for horses can be viewed at the ORC web site, using the following link:
ORC regulatory initiatives
The protection of the health and welfare of the horse is of paramount concern to the ORC and to members of the racing community. An effort to monitor the horse in weather extremes is in keeping with this mandate.
by John L. BLAKNEY