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Horse Medications and Health Requirements

Post-Race Drug Testing

Equine drug testing is conducted by Industrial Labs to National Uniform Medication

Policy standards.


Information on therapeutic medications and thresholds is available at the following websites:

Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC) –

Association of Racing Commissioners International (ARCI) –


Permitted Medications

Once entered to race, the only permitted medications a horse may be given are phenylbutazone, furosemide and certain anti-ulcer medications.



• 2 gm of phenylbutazone may be given orally or by injection up to 24 hours before race time and must not exceed the threshold of 5 ug/ml.

• Phenylbutazone is not permitted for 2 year olds.

• No notification is required for using phenylbutazone.


Furosemide (Lasix)

• 2 to 5 mls (100-250 mg) of furosemide may be given intravenously no later than three hours before post.

• Stewards may grant a 30minute grace period if a horse arrives late to the track.

• Furosemide is administered by private vets at a designated site.

• Furosemide is not permitted in 2yearold Standardbreds.

• Furosemide eligibility is determined by previous usage, bleeder certificate, authorization from another jurisdiction or submission of a MGCB Furosemide Request Form.

• Request for removal from the furosemide eligibility list requires the trainer to notify a MGCB veterinarian in writing no later than administration time of the subsequent race.


Total CO2 (TCO2) Testing

Harness Racing: TCO2 testing may be performed before warm-up, before post parade or two hours after a race as determined by the MGCB veterinarian.

Flat Racing: TCO2 testing may be performed before arrival at the saddling paddock or two hours after a race as determined by the MGCB veterinarian.


Coggins Testing and Health Certificates

All horses racing in Michigan must have a negative Coggins test. A Coggins test is valid for one year. Any horse arriving at the track from other jurisdictions must have a valid health certificate to enter the grounds. All trainers are advised to stay current with Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development regulations.


Equine Herpes Virus (EHV) Vaccination Requirements

All horses entering a Michigan pari-mutuel racetrack must have proof of EHV vaccination within the last six months. The vaccination certificate must be submitted to a MGCB veterinarian before time of entry. The certificate must include the trainer’s name, the signature and phone number of the vet giving the vaccination, the horse’s registered name, the date given, and the product name. A copy of a horse’s vaccination certificate must be available to show the security guard when the horse arrives at the racetrack entry gate.


Cornell Collar

Trainers must submit proof to the MGCB veterinarian that his/her private vet has prescribed the use of a Cornell Collar and the trainer has been instructed in its proper use. A written request also is necessary to discontinue the collar’s use.



The MGCB veterinarian must receive notice after competing horses undergo a posterior digital neurectomy. The horse must be included on the Heel Nerved Horse list.


Veterinarian’s Unable to Perform List (Vet List)

A horse placed on the Vet’s List must be released before entry. Vet’s List release requirements vary with the reason the horse was placed on the list. Contact the MGCB veterinarian if you have not been told the requirements for release. Trainers with horses on out of state vet lists must meet the vet list requirements for removal in that state.


Off-Track Use of Medications

The horse racing law of 1995 states it is a violation for any licensee to possess within the confines of an off-track stable any drug not authorized by the executive director for use at those locations. The executive director authorizes the use of FDA-approved, properly prescribed and labeled therapeutic medications at these sites. Questions on off-track use of medications should be addressed to the MGCB at 313-456-0236.