Buying horses abroad and foreign vettings

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More and more riders are venturing to Europe to buy competition horses, but many are running into problems when it comes to having the horse vetted overseas. So we’ve put together a checklist to help you on your way:

• Ask your insurance company for a list of its requirements before the vetting takes place

• Ensure the vet is working for you and not the vendor

• Tell the vet exactly what you require of the vetting and what the horse will be used for. Find an English-speaking vet and talk to them directly, not via an agent or the vendor

• Consult with your own vet at the start. If they have not seen the horse and only have an inadequate series of X-rays to review, they may not be able to advise you fully

• Consider sending your own vet out to do the vetting or find a vet that has been recommended to you personally

• If you have X-rays done make sure everyone, including insurers and all vets, have approved them before completing your purchase

• Never accept the results of a previous vetting

• Be aware of the cultural differences in how ailments are perceived and be patient — do not let your heart rule your head

• If you’ve never bought a horse abroad, take someone experienced with you

For the full feature on overseas vettings, see the current issue of Horse & Hound (23 September, ’10)

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