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Racing authority amends rules on influenza vaccine
All horses that enter the racecourse must have been vaccinated against equine influenza by a veterinary surgeon.
New rule also added on extracorporeal shockwave therapy

The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) is alerting horse owners, trainers and veterinary surgeons of two important changes to its rules of racing.

Rule (E) 18 has been amended so that horses will not be permitted to run in the event of a failure to comply with any of the requirements for vaccinations against equine influenza.  

Under the BHA’s rules of racing, all horses that enter the racecourse must have been vaccinated against equine influenza by a veterinary surgeon, to control infectious disease and protect equine welfare.

Currently, in the event of non-compliance, the horse may not be permitted to run unless it has, in the opinion of the veterinary officer, received at least a vaccination against equine influenza. The BHA says this effectively permits horses to run when they have not been vaccinated correctly, which could present a risk to other horses at the site.

The rule is now worded:
'18.7 In the event of failure to comply with any of the requirements of this Rule in respect of a horse which is on Racecourse Property
'18.7.1., unless the Stewards have given their permission the horse will not be permitted to run in any race; and
'18.7.2 the Trainer or the Owner of the horse are liable to Disciplinary Action'.

In addition, the BHA has introduced a new rule that will require horses to be stood down from racing for five days after extra-corporeal shockwave therapy.

ESWT is used in equine orthopaedics to treat a number of conditions, and involves directing shock waves onto the injured area.

The new rule is worded: '11.C The horse must not have been administered extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) on the day of the race or on any of the five days before the day of the race in which the horse is declared to run.'

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Nominations for 2019 RSPCA Honours Awards now open

News Story 1
 People across the UK are being urged to nominate a standout animal champion for the 2019 RSPCA Honours Awards.

The awards recognise those who have worked tirelessly to improve animal welfare, campaigned on behalf of animals, or shown true bravery. Previous winners include comedian John Bishop, who was awarded Celebrity Animal Champion of the Year, and 11-year-old Lobby Cantwell, who raised more than £1,000 for the charity through mountain climbs and bike rides.

To submit a nomination or find out more about the awards visit the RSPCA website. Nominations will remain open until 4 pm on Friday, March 15.  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
New £1m project to investigate dairy cow lameness

Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) is leading a new £1 million research project to investigate the causes of lameness in dairy cows.

One in three dairy cows are affected by lameness every day in the UK, costing the industry an estimated £250 milion annually.

The project will take three years to complete and is due to finish by November 2021.

Professor Georgios Banos of SRUC commented: “In addition to pain and discomfort to the animal, lameness is associated with decreased milk production and inflated farm costs.

“Among cows raised in the same environment, some become lame while others do not. Understanding the reasons behind this will help us develop targeted preventive practices contributing to enhanced animal welfare and farm profitability.”