used in describing a horse's manner of running. ("Horse's action was
smooth and energy conserving.")
A way of treating an
animal or human through the use of needles, electrical current or
moxibustion (heat and herbs) to stimulate or realign the body's
associations add to total purse of selected races, which supplements
nominations and other entry/starting fees. Usually only in stakes
Additional weight a
horse is carrying beyond the race requirements. Usually happens
because the jockey exceeds the stated limit.
contracted to transact business for a stable owner or jockey, or
contracted to sell or buy horses for an owner or breeder.
When a horse extends itself to its fullest
Race for which the racing
secretary sets certain conditions to determine weights to be carried
based on the horse's age, sex and/or past
Weight reduction allowed
because of the conditions of the race or because an apprentice
jockey is on a horse. Weight reduction females receive when racing
against males, or that three-year-olds receive against older horses.
Horse entered for a race but not allowed
to start unless other horses scratch.
inability to sweat when working or other increases in body
temperature. Also known as a "non-sweater." Most commonly occurs
when both the temperature and humidity are high. Horses raised in
temperate regions and then transported to hot climates most often
develop this condition but even acclimated horses can be at risk.
Usually shows itself as inability to sweat, increased respiratory
rate, elevated body temperature and decreased exercise tolerance.
Sometimes the condition can be reversed if the horse is moved to a
more temperate climate.
concession given to an apprentice rider: usually 10 pounds until the
fifth winner, seven pounds until the 35th winner and five pounds for
one calendar year from the 35th winner. More rarely, a three-pound
allowance is allowed to a rider under contract to a specific
stable/owner for two years from his/her first win. This rule varies
from state to state. Apprentices do not receive an allowance when
riding in a stakes race. All jockeys going from track to track must
have a receipt from the clerk of scales from their track verifying
the jockeys' most recent total number of wins. Also known as a
"bug," from the asterisk used to denote the weight
Inflammation of a joint.
Surgery performed that eliminates
the need to open the joint with a large incision in order to view
the damaged area.
artificial insemination or embryo transfer (transplants). Not
approved by the Jockey Club.
Waste away, usually
used in describing muscles.
Average-Earnings Index (AEI)
Breeding statistic that compares racing earnings of a stallion
or mare's foals to those of all other foals racing at that time. An
AEI of 1.00 is considered average, 2.00 is twice the average, 0.50
Back at the Knee
Confirmation fault. Leg has a backward arc with center of arc at
the knee when viewed from side.
Describes a filly
or mare which was bred during last breeding season but did not
Boldface type, used in sales
catalogs to identify horses that have won or placed in stakes races.
Bold and all caps means a stakes-winning horse.
Horse that bleeds from lungs when small capillaries that
surround air sacs in the lungs rupture. Exact term is
Exercise-Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage (EIPH).
discovered by an endoscopic exam after exercise, blood may be
noticed coming from the horse's nostrils. A common preventative
treatment is Lasix (furosemide).
counter-irritant causing acute inflammation. Inflammation increases
blood to the blistered area, thought to speed healing in the
Broker who represents
purchaser or seller (or both) at a sale. Usually agent works on
commission, often five percent of purchase price.
Short workout at moderate pace, usually a day or two before a
Bony growth below hock joint. Occurs
as a result of undue concussion or strain, causing a lameness.
Group of mares bred to a stallion in a given year.
(If stallion has attracted the farm's maximum number of mares,
stallion is said to have a Full Book.
Thoroughbred's breeding in the female (distaff) side.
Tendinitis to the Superficial Flexor Tendon
(most common location) below knee and running behind cannon bone.
Usually requires long layoff and can mean end of racing career or
considered "bred" at place of birth. Breeder is owner of dam at time
Right to breed one mare to
one stallion for one or more breeding seasons.
Workout at a moderate speed with less effort than handily.
Female (filly or mare) that has been bred and
used to produce foals. Broodmare Prospect is a filly or mare that
has not yet been bred.
Inflammation of covering of the front surface of the cannon
bone. Young horses are susceptible. Not career threatening, but
usually requires a layoff from training. (Called bucked because of
humped or bucked appearance on the bone.)
workout time for a certain distance on a certain day. In the
listings, this fastest workout is marked by a printer's "bullet."
Horse put through an auction that did not reach
seller's reserve and was retained. (Consigner must still pay a fee
to the auction company based on a percentage of the
projection on the heels of a horseshoe, similar to a cleat, on the
rear shoes of a horse to prevent slipping, especially on a wet
track. Also known as a "sticker." Sometimes incorrectly spelled
The third metacarpal (front leg) or
metatarsal (rear leg), also referred to as the shin bone. The
largest bone between the knee and ankle joints.
Inflammation of the bursa over the point of the hock.
A joint in the horse's front leg. Common tern is
A horse on its side or back and wedged
against a wall in a way that it can't get up.
Toward the tail.
Center of Distribution
between the speed and staying ability of a horse based on the Dosage
A list of quality sires that pass
on certain traits based on the Dosage Profile theory.
1. Horse color from red-yellow to
golden-yellow. Mane, tail, and legs (other than white markings) are
same color as coat.
2. Irregular growths found on the inside of
the legs. Found just above the knees or below the hocks. No two
horses have been found to have the same chestnuts and so they may be
used for identification. Also called "night eyes."
Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Called COPD. A hyperallergenic
respiratory condition that involves damage to the lung tissue,
similar to human asthma. Affected horses may cough, develop a nasal
discharge and have a reduced exercise tolerance. Respiratory rate is
increased and lung elasticity is diminished.
Permanent build-up of synovial fluid in a joint, characterized
by inflammation and thickening of the joint capsule over the damaged
Process by which a licensed person may
purchase a horse entered in a designated race for a price set by
race conditions. When a horse has been claimed, its new owner
assumes title after the starting gate opens although the former
owner is entitled to all purse money earned in that race.
Box in which claims are deposited before
Describes distance. The "Classic"
distance in America is 1 1/4 miles. The European classic distance is
Clerk of Scales
Official who weighs the
riders before and after a race to ensure proper weight is (was)
When a horse lifts its front legs
abnormally high as it gallops, causing it to run inefficiently.
Condition when the cartilaginous growth
plate above the knee (distal radial physis) has turned to bone.
Indicates completion of long bone growth and is one sign of
Horse that runs best in the latter part
of the race, coming from off the pace.
bone that is within the hoof.
for its developer, dr. Leroy Coggins, to determine whether a horse
is a carrier of swamp fever.
Leading cause of death
in horses. Refers to abdominal pain. Sometimes colic is a simple
obstruction in the large colon, sometimes a strangulation caused by
a twist in small or large intestine that shuts off food and blood
An ungelded (entire) male horse
four-years-old or younger.
Comparable Index (CI)
earnings of progeny produced from mares bred to one sire when these
same mares are bred to other sires. A Cl of 1.00 is considered
average, 2.00 is twice the average, 0.50 half the average, etc.
Fracture where the damaged bone breaks
through the skin. Also known as an "open" fracture.
Books produced by the racing secretary
that set the conditions of races to be run at a certain
Requirements of a particular race.
This may include age, sex, money or races won, weight carried and
the distance of the race.
the lower knobby end (condyle) of the lower (distal) end of a long
bone such as the cannon bone or humerus (upper front limb).
Physical makeup of and bodily proportions
of a horse: how it is put together.
Restoring a horse to normal
temperature, usually by walking, after it has become overheated
during exercise. All horses that are exercised are cooled out.
Where the hair meets the hoof. Also called
To expel air from the lungs in a
spasmodic manner. Can be a result of inflammation or irritation to
the upper airways (pharynx, larynx or trachea) or may involve the
lower airways of the lungs (deep cough).
Two or more horses running as an entry in a single betting unit.
Single breeding of a stallion to a mare. "The
stallion covered 75 mares."
in which the points of the hocks turn in.
Vertical split of the hoof wall.
A feeding device that allows the foal
to eat but keeps its mother out.
clings to objects with its teeth and sucks air into its stomach.
Also known as a "wind sucker."
Number of foals by a
sire in a given year. Also a group of horses born in the same year.
Also, a jockey's whip.
cryptorchid" is a male horse of any age that has one testicle
undescended. A "bilateral cryptorchid" is a male horse of any age
that has both testicles undescended. (Horse called a ridgling.)
Term for a track condition where surface is dry
and loose and breaks away under a horse's hooves.
female parent of a foal.
Dam's Sire (Broodmare Sire)
Sire of a broodmare (maternal grandsire of a foal).
Bay or Brown
Color that ranges from brown with areas of tan on
the shoulders, head and flanks, to a dark brown, with tan areas seen
only in the flanks and/or muzzle. The mane, tail and lower portions
of the legs are always black unless white markings are present.
In the United States, a horse withdrawn from a
stakes race in advance of scratch time. In Europe, a horse confirmed
to start in a race.
Deep Flexor Tendon
Present in all
four legs, but injuries most commonly affect the front legs. Located
on the back (posterior) of the front leg between the knee and the
foot and between the hock and the foot on the rear leg. The function
is to flex the digit (pastern) and knee (carpus) and to extend the
elbow on the front leg and extend the hock on the rear leg.
Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD)
Joint problem that has
progressive degeneration of joint cartilage and the underlying bone.
Occurs most frequently in the joints below the radius in the foreleg
and femur in the hind leg. Some of the more common causes include
repeated trauma, conformation faults, blood disease, traumatic joint
injury, subsubchondral bone defects ( CD lesions) and excessive
corticosteroid injections. Also known as: osteoarthritis.
Stakes event for three-year-olds.
Barn where horses are required to go
until blood tests or urine samples have been taken for testing. (See
Part of the limb below the ankle joint.
Includes the long and short pastern bones and the coffin bone.
Area beneath the coffin bone in the back
of the foot that separates it from the frog. Serves as a shock
absorber for the foot.
Race for female
Dimethyl sulfoxide, a topical
Rubber traffic cones placed at
certain distances out from the inner rail, when the track is wet,
muddy, soft, yielding or heavy, to prevent horses during the workout
period from churning the footing along the rail.
Toward the back or spine.
Dorsal Displacement of the
Condition in which the soft palate, located on the
floor of the airway near the larynx, moves up into the airway. A
minor displacement causes a gurgling sound during exercise while in
more serious cases the palate can block the airway. Sometimes known
as "choking down," but the tongue does not actually block the
airway. The base of the tongue is connected to the larynx, of which
the epiglottis is a part. When the epiglottis is retracted, the soft
palate can move up into the airway (dorsal displacement.) This
condition can sometimes be managed with equipment such as a figure
eight noseband or a tongue tie. In more extreme cases, surgery might
There are many Dosage Theories,
however, the one most commonly thought of as Dosage is by Dr. Steven
Roman. The system identifies patterns of ability in horses based on
a list of prepotent sires, each of whom is a chef-de-race. The
Dosage system puts these sires into one of five categories:
brilliant, intermediate, classic, solid and professional, which
quantify speed and stamina. Sires can be listed in up to two
chef-de-race categories. Each generation of sires is worth 16
points, divided up by the amount of sires, i.e., the immediate sire
is worth 16 points while the four sires four generations back are
worth four points apiece.
Dosage Index (DI)
reduction of the Dosage profile to a number reflecting a horse's
potential for speed or stamina. The higher the number, the more
likely the horse is suited to be a sprinter. The average Dosage
index of all horses is about 4.0.
of Dosage points by category. Used to develop the Dosage index.
Horse that is all out to win and under strong
urging from its jockey.
Horse meeting a lower
class of rival than it had been running against.
Extremely late in breaking from the gate.
that is gently pulled up during a race.
Instrument used to inspect a hollow organ or body cavity.
Stakes nomination, a jockey's riding
An ungelded horse.
Fee paid by an owner to enter a horse in a stakes race.
Condition in which the thin
membrane lying below the epiplottis moves up and covers the
epiglottis. The abnormality may obstruct breathing. Usually treated
by surgery to cut the membrane.
Two or more horses
running under the same owner; sometimes trained by the same trainer.
These become a single betting unit.
Inflammation in the growth plate at the ends of the long bones
(such as the cannon bone). Symptoms include swelling, tenderness and
heat. Although the exact cause is unknown, contributing factors seem
to be high caloric intake (either from grain or a heavily lactating
mare) and a fast growth rate.
equipment, such as bandages, bar shoe, blinkers, hood, nose band,
shadow roll, tongue tie.
Heat. Associated with
ovulation. Estrous cycle: Time between consecutive ovulations.
EVA (Equine Viral Arteritis)
Highly contagious disease
characterized by swelling in the legs of all horses and swelling in
the scrotum of stallions. Can cause abortion in mares and can be
shed in the semen of stallions for years after infection.
Neither gaining nor losing position during a
Exercise-Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage
Experimental Free Handicap
Year-end projection of the
best North American two-year-olds of the season, put together by a
panel, under the auspices of The Jockey Club.
Running at top speed.
extends the knee joint, ankle joint, pastern and foot and flexes the
elbow. The muscles begin above the knee and attach to the coffin and
Weak points of a horse's conformation.
located between the cannon bone and the long pastern bone.
Female horse four-years-old or younger.
Medical treatment used on a horse's legs to
encourage healing by increasing circulation. Method involves numbing
the leg and creating a number of pin-sized holes in the leg with a
hot electrically heated tool. Also known as pin firing.
Longitudinal crack in bone, which is only
through the surface of the bone.
tired horse that slows considerably, dropping its head on a straight
line with its body.
Dental procedure in which
sharp points on the teeth are filed down.
First time a mare comes into season
after giving birth, about nine days afterward.
Arrangement between owner of a stallion share or season and
broodmare owner to breed them and to share the foal.
The Darley Arabian,
Byerly Turk and Godolphin Barb. Every Thoroughbred must be able to
trace its parentage to one of the three founding sires.
V-shaped, pliable support structure on the bottom of the foot.
Full Brother, Fill Sister
Horses that have the same sire and
One-eigbth of a mile, 220 yards, 660 feet.
Medication used in the treatment of
bleeders, commonly known under the trade name Lasix, which acts as a
diuretic, reducing pressure on the capillaries.
Race for two-year-olds in which the owners make a continuous
series of payments over a period of time to keep their horses
Footfall pattern of a horse in motion. Thoroughbreds have four
natural gaits-walk, trot, canter and gallop. Thoroughbreds compete
at a gallop.
The opening in the rail where horses
enter and leave the racetrack.
of a horse's stomach. Often causes symptoms of abdominal distress.
C card, which the starters issue, stating that
a horse is properly schooled in starting gate procedures.
Male horse that has been neutered by having both
Offspring of a sire.
Elastic and leather band that passes under a
horse's belly and is connected to both sides of the saddle.
Grab a Quarter
Injury to the back of the hoof or foot
caused by a horse stepping on itself. A very common injury during
racing. Generally, the injury is minor.
system of race classification, established in 1973, for select
stakes races in North America. These are denoted by Roman numerals
I, II, or III. They care capitalized when used in a race's title.
(Similar to the European Group Races.)
A horse's grandfather
Infection of the hoof resulting from a crack in
the white line (the border between the insensitive and sensitive
laminae). An abscess usually forms in the sensitive structures and
eventually breaks at the coronet as the result of the infection.
Horse color where the majority of the coat is a
mixture of black and white hairs. The mane, tail and legs may be
either black or gray unless white markings are present.
Grayson-jockey Club Research Foundation
organization devoted to equine medical research.
Inflammation and swelling in the fetlock joint of young
horses, particularly on the front of the joints where the cannon and
long pastern bones meet.
Person who cares for a
horse in a stable. Known as a lad or girl in Britain.
European system of classifying select races, similar to
North American graded races. Denoted by Arabic numerals 1, 2, or 3.
Capitalized when used in a race's title.
Located at the end of long bones where they grow in length.
Horses out of the same dam but by different sires.
Horses with the same sire and different dams are not considered
half-siblings in Thoroughbred racing.
A horse's height is measured in hands and inches from the top of the
shoulder (withers) to the ground, e.g., 15.2 hands is 15 hands, 2
inches. Thoroughbreds typically range from 15 to 17 hands.
1) Race for which the track handicapper assigns
the weights to be carried.
2) To make selections on the basis of
1) A work (usually in the
morning) with maximum effort.
2) A horse racing well within
itself, with little exertion from the jockey.
Amount of money wagered in the parimutuels on a race, a program,
during a meeting or for a year.
Urging a horse
with the hands and not using the whip.
for a well-traveled breeder. Usually connotes a breeder or trainer
whose methods may be considered old-fashioned--"Whose boots are
caked with mud and therefore hard."
the heel of the heel Also called a "sand crack."
Blood-filled area resulting from injury.
joint just above the shin bone in the rear legs. Corresponds to the
level of the knee of the front leg.
by its owner.
Foot of the horse.
When reference is made to sex, a horse is an ungelded male
five-years-old or older.
Behavior of a mare in
Person who walks horses
to cool them out after workout or races.
does not advance its position in a race when urged by the jockey.
When a horse is stood in a tub
of ice or ice packs are applied to the legs to reduce inflammation
Type of colic caused by a
blockage of the intestines by ingested materials (constipation).
Weight carried or assigned.
Running under moderate
control, at less than top speed.
Layer just under the wall of the hoof. Similar to the human
fingernail. It is an integral structure that helps to attach the
hoof wall to the underlying coffin bone.
In the Money
Horse that finishes first, second or third.
Facility used to separate sick horses from healthy ones.
Requirement that a horse which has been claimed that next runs
in a claiming race must run for a claiming price 25 percent higher
for the next 30 days.
to the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding and racing. The Jockey
Club serves as North America's Thoroughbred registry, responsible
for the maintenance of "The American Stud Book," a register of all
Thoroughbreds foaled in the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada;
and of all Thoroughbreds imported into those countries from
jurisdictions that have a registry recognized by The Jockey Club and
the International Stud Book Committee.
paid to rider for competing in a race.
Steeplechase or hurdle horse.
Two-year old horse.
In wagering, a single horse
used in multiple combinations in exotics.
Organic acid normally
present in muscle tissue, produced by anaerobic muscle metabolism as
a by-product of exercise. An increase in lactic acid causes muscle
fatigue, inflammation and pain.
Part of the
hoof. (See insensitive laminae and sensitive laminae.)
Inflammation of the sensitive laminae of the
foot. There are many factors involved, including changes in the
blood flow through the capillaries of the foot. Many events can
cause laminitis, including ingesting toxic levels of grain, eating
lush grass, systemic disease problems, high temperature, toxemia,
retained placenta, excessive weight-bearing as occurs when the
opposite limb is injured, and the administration of some drugs.
Laminitis usually manifests itself in the front feet, develops
rapidly, and is life-threatening. In mild cases, however, a horse
can resume a certain amount of athletic activity. Laminitis is the
disease that caused the death of Secretariat. Also known as
Toward the side and farther from the center. Pertains to a side.
See washed out.
Measurement approximating the length of a horse, used to denote
distance between horses in a race.
fibrous tissue connecting bones, which serve to support and
strengthen joints and to limit the range of motion.
1) Horse rearing and plunging.
2) Method of exercising a
horse on a tether ("lunge line").
Physical therapy technique using magnetic fields.
Low-energy electrical field created by the magnetic field causes
dilation of the blood vessels and tissue stimulation. Magnetic
therapy may be used on soft tissue to treat such injuries as
tendinitis or bony injuries such as bucked shins.
1) A horse or rider that has not won a race.
2) A female
that has never been bred.
Female horse five-years-old or older.
Soft, moist mixture, hot or cold, of grain and
other feed that is easily digested by horses.
Pertaining to the middle in anatomy.
Usually refers to a fracture of the cannon bone,
located between the knee and the fetlock joint in the front leg.
Also may refer to a fracture of the splint bone.
In racing, roughly from one mile to 1 1/8 miles.
Mutuel pool caused when a horse is so heavily
played that, after deductions of state tax and commission, there is
not enough money left to pay the legally prescribed minimum on each
winning bet. The racing association usually makes up the difference.
Male horse of any age that has only one
testicle in his scrotum--the other testicle was either removed or is
Probable odds on each horse in
a race, as determined by a mathematical formula used by the track
handicapper, who tries to guage both the ability of the horse and
the likely final odds as determined by the bettors.
Condition of a racetrack which is wet but has no
Horse that races well on muddy
Short for parimutuel pool. Sum of
the wagers on a race or event, such as the win pool, daily double
pool, exacta pool, etc.
1) Nose and lips of a
2) A guard placed over a horse's mouth to prevent it from
biting or eating.
Name (of a
Names of North American Thoroughbreds are
registered by The Jockey Club. They can be no longer than 18
characters, including punctuation and spaces.
Long tube that is
capable of reaching from the nose to the stomach.
Small, flat bone within the confines of the hoof that helps
- along with the short pastern bone and the coffin bone - to make up
the coffin joint.
that affects the navicular bone (small bone in the back of the
foot), navicular bursa and deep flexor tendon. Generally considered
a disease of the front feet. Both front feet are often affected, but
one will usually be more noticeable than the other.
Left side of a horse. Side
on which a horse is mounted.
Nom de Course
Name adopted by an owner or group of
owners for racing purposes.
One who owns a
horse at the time it is named to compete in a stakes race.
Leather strap that goes over the bridge of a horse's nose to
help secure the bridle. A "figure eight" nose band goes over the
bridge of the nose and under the rings of the bit to help keep the
horse's mouth closed. This keeps the tongue from sliding up over the
bit and is used on horses that do not like having a tongue tie used.
Stakes event for three-year-old
Cartilaginous or bony
lesion that is the result of a failure in development.
Right side of horse.
mineral oil via nasopastric tube to relieve gas or pass blockage.
Preventative procedure commonly used in long van aides to prevent
impaction with subsequent colics. See colic.
On the Bit
When a horse is eager to run.
On the Board
among the first three.
On the Muscle
Denotes a fit horse.
Condition of young horses in which the physis
of the knee has not closed; an immature knee. Often used to describe
the status of the physis immediately above the knee and is an
indicator of long bone growth in two-year-olds.
Permanent form of
arthritis with progressive loss of the articular cartilage in a
Out of the Money
Horse that finishes worse than
Over at the Knee
Leg that looks like it has a
forward arc,with its center at the knee when viewed from the side.
Strap that holds the bit in place.
Elastic band that goes completely around a
horse, over the saddle, to keep the saddle from slipping.
Toe of hind shoe striking the forefoot or
Horse going off at higher odds than it
appears to warrant based on its past performances.
Sheet published by the racing secretary's office listing the
entries for an upcoming racing card.
in which entries close a specific number of hours before running
(such as 48 hours), as opposed to a stakes race for which
nominations close weeks and sometimes months in advance.
Official in charge of
paddock and saddling routine.
used to increase blood supply, blood flow and to promote healing in
the leg. A mild form of blistering.
entrance by a veterinarian through a mare's anus to feel or
"palpate" her ovaries and uterus to determine breeding soundness,
follicular activity (readiness to breed), uterine condition, or
Multi-race bet in which all winnings
are subsequently wagered on each succeeding race.
Horse with an extreme overbite.
Form of wagering originated in 1865 by Frenchman Pierre Oiler in
which all money bet is divided up among those who have winning
tickets, after taxes, takeout and other deductions are made. Oiler
called his system "paiier mutuel" meaning "mutual stake" or "betting
among ourselves." As this wagering method was adopted in England it
became known as "Paris Mutuals," and soon after "parimutuels."
A horse's racing record, earnings,
bloodlines and other data, presented in composite form.
Area between the fetlock joint and the
hoof. The joint between the long and short pastern bones is called
the "pastern joint." Can also be used to describe the area of the
limb or to describe a specific bone: long pastern bone.
Official(s) who observe the progress of a
race from various vantage points around the track.
Written record of a thoroughbred's immediate ancestors. Usually
one that gives four generations, called a four-cross pedigree.
Inflammation of the tissue (periosteum) that
overlies bone. Periostitis of the cannon bone is referred to as
"bucked shins," while periostitis of the splint bone is called a
"splint." May be heard in the expression:
Popped a splint.
growth plate at the end of the long bones (such as the cannon bone)
that lets the bone grow in length.
forced back due to racing in close quarters.
Thermocautery used to increase blood flow to the leg to promote
healing. See Firing.
Person who buys a horse
with the specific intention of re-selling it at a profit.
Official who posts the order of finish in
Points of Call
Horse's position at various
locations on the racetrack where its running position is noted on a
chart. The locations vary with the distance of the race.
Any horse or pony that leads the parade of the
field from paddock to starting gate. Also, a horse or pony which
accompanies a starter to the starting gate.
Popped a Splint
1) Starting point for a race.
2) An abbreviated version of post position: He drew post four.
Situated behind or toward the rear.
Horses with prior rights to starting,
usually because they have previously been entered in races that have
not filled with the minimum number of starters.
Workout (or race) used to prepare a horse for a future
When a horse suddenly stops moving by
digging its front feet into the ground.
Trainer whose services are not exclusively engaged by a single
stable and who accepts horses from a number of owners.
Suspensory ligament injury (suspensory
desmitis) in which some portion of the fibers of the ligament have
been disrupted and some loss of support of the distal limb may have
To stop or slow a horse during or
after a race or workout.
Total monetary amount
distributed after a race to the owners of the entrants who have
finished in the (usually) top four or five positions. Some racing
jurisdictions may pay purse money through other places.
1) A U.S. Department of Agriculture structure used to
isolate foreign horses for a short period of time to ensure they are
not carrying any diseases. The structure may be at a racetrack,
airport or specially designated facility. Horses must be cleared by
a federal veterinarian before being released from quarantine.
Any facility used to keep infected horses away from the general
Crack between the toe
and heel, usually extending into the coronary band.
Wager in which the first two finishers must be picked in either
order. Similar to a "boxed" exacta or perfecta.
speed horse running as an entry with another, usually
come-from-behind horse. The rabbit is expected to set a fast pace to
help the chances of its stablemate.
Official who writes conditions of races and assigns weights for
Horse that refuses to settle under
a jockey's handling in a race, running in a headstrong manner
without respect to pace.
by horses shipping in for a race who do not have a stall at that
When a horse will not break from the
Long straps, usually made of leather, that
are connected to the bit and used by the jockey to control the
Minimum price, set by the consignor, for
a horse in a public auction: The horse did not reach its reserve.
Horse that finishes a
race under mild urging, not as severe as driving.
Term describing either a cryptorchid or monorchid. Also spelled
Osteoarthzitis of joints between
the pastern bones ("high ring bone") or just above the coronet ("low
"Reserve not achieved." (Used in
results of a sale.) See reserve.
Horse color where
the majority of the coat of the horse is a mixture of red and white
hairs or brown and white hairs. The mane, tail and legs may be
black, chestnut or roan unless white markings are present.
Whistling sound made by a horse during
inhalation while exercising. It is caused by a partial or total
paralysis of the nerves controlling the muscles which elevate the
arytenoid cartilages which thereby open the larynx. In severe cases,
a surgical procedure known as "tic-back surgery" (laryngoplasty) is
performed, in which a suture is inserted through the cartilage to
hold it out of the airway permanently. Paralysis almost exclusively
occurs on the left side, most frequently in horses over 16 hands
Generally, a race distance of longer than 11/8 miles.
Horse that performs well at longer distances.
Abrasions of the heel. Rundown bandages:
Wrappings to minimize rundown abrasions.
Special type of bit to prevent a horse from hearing out (or in).
Cotton cloth which goes under the saddle to absorb sweat. It
usually has the horse's program number and sometimes, in major
races, its name.
Piece of felt, sheepskin, or
more usually, foam rubber, used as a base for the
Stress fracture of the front of the cannon bone that
can be straight or curved.
Scale of Weights
Fixed weights to be
carried by horses according to their age, sex, race distance and
time of year.
Process of familiarizing a
horse with the starting gate and teaching it racing practices. A
horse may also be schooled in the paddock.
List of horses eligible to school at the starting Rate before
being permitted to race.
To be taken out of a
race before it starts. Trainers usually scratch horses due to
adverse track conditions or a horse's adverse health. A veterinarian
an can scratch a horse at any time.
Secondary mount of a jockey in a race in the event the primary
mount is scratched.
Grandmother of a horse.
Also known as a "grandam."
Area of the
hoof that contains nerves and vessels.
Two small bones
(medial and lateral sesamoids) located above and at the back of the
fetlock joint. Four common fractures of the sesamoids are apical
(along the top of the bone), abaxial (the side of the sesamoid away
from the ankle joint), mid-body (sesamoid broken in halo and basilar
(through the bottom) fractures.
Fracture of the sesamoid bone. Fractures can be small chips or
involve the entire bone. Surgical repair is often done by
Inflammation of the sesamoid
Group of horses being exercised together.
1) A suspension: The jockey was set down five
days for careless ri&ng.
2) When a jockey assumes a lower
crouch in the saddle while urging the horse to pick up speed: The
horse was set down for the &drive to the wire.
according to their age and the time of year, are allowed to carry
three to five pounds less when meeting males.
A (usually sheepskin)
roll that is secured over the bridge of a horse's nose to keep it
from seeing shadows on the track and shying away from or jumping
Rope or strap attached to a
halter or bridle by which a horse is led.
The stable area. A row of
Horse in need of more work or
racing to reach winning form.
1) The male parent.
2) To beget foals.
A breeding term meaning
Racing strip that is
saturated with water; with standing water visible.
A racing strip that is wet on both the surface and base.
Small patch of white hairs on the nose or lips of a
Solid white markings extending from the top
of the hoof to the ankles.
Condition of a
turf course with a large amount of moisture. Horses sink very deeply
A three-year-old horse. Called a
sophomore because age three is the second year of racing
Term describing a barm where
horses are brought for post-race testing. Tests may include saliva,
urine and/or blood.
Spit the Bit
Term referring to a
tired horse that begins to run less aggressively, backing off on the
"pull" a rider normally feels on the reins from an eager horse.
1) Either of the two small
bones that lie along the sides of the cannon bone.
condition where calcification occurs on the splint bone causing a
bump. This can result from response to a fracture or other
irritation to the splint bone. A common injury is a "popped splint."
Short race, less than one mile.
Race for which the owner
usually pays a fee to run a horse. The fees can be for nominating,
maintaining eligibility, entering and starting, to which the track
adds more money to make up the total purse. Some stakes races are by
invitation and require no payment or fee.
Finished second or third in a stakes race.
Horse whose level of competition includes mostly stakes races.
Male horse used for breeding.
Right to breed one
mare to a particular stallion during one breeding season.
A lifetime breeding right to a stallion;
one mare per season per share.
moves about its stall constantly and frets rather than rests.
Any of a number of white
markings on the forehead. (The forehead is defined as being above an
imaginary line connecting the tops of the eyes.)
Allowance or handicap
race restricted to horses that have started for a specific claiming
price or less.
Horse bred in a particular
state and thus eligible to compete in races restricted to
Horse that can race long
Horse being taken in hand by its
rider, usually because of being in close quarters.
Horse moving up in class to
meet better competition.
Officials of the race
meeting responsible for enforcing the rules of racing.
Large joint above the bock
which is made up by the femur, the patella and the tibia.
Metal D-shaped rings into which a jockey places
his/her feet. They can be raised or lowered depending on the
jockey's preference. Also known as "irons."
Solid white markings extending from the top of the hoof to the
knee or hock.
by the stress created by a repetitive loading cycle on the bone,
commonly found in athletic training. Usually seen in the front of
the cannon bone as a severe form of bucked shins. Also seen in the
tibia and causes a hard-to-diagnose hind limb lameness.
Final straight: portion of the racetrack
to the finish.
Horse that runs its
fastest nearing the finish of a race.
White marking running down a
horse's face, starting under an imaginary line connecting the tops
of the eyes.
Slang name for distemper
in a horse. Term derives from fact that in severe cases it occurs in
the windpipe area and can strangle a horse.
horse used for breeding.
genealogical record of Thoroughbreds, maintained by the Jockey Club
of the country in question.
Fee paid by
owner to nominate a horse for a stakes race or to maintain
eligibility for a stakes race.
race used to replace a regularly scheduled race that does not fill
or is canceled.
Foal in its first year of life,
while it is still nursing.
Superficial Flexor Tendon
Present in all four legs, but injuries most commonly affect the
front legs. Located on the back (posterior) of the front leg between
the knee and the foot and between the hock and the foot on the rear
leg. The function is to flex the digit (pastern) and knee (carpus)
and to extend the elbow on the front leg and extend the hock on the
rear leg. Functions in tandem with the deep flexor tendon.
Originates at the back of the knee
(front leg) and the back of the top part of the cannon bone (hind
leg), attaching to the sesamoid bones. The lower portion of the
ligament attaches the lower part of the sesamoid bones to the
pastern bones. Its function is to support the fetlock. The lower
ligaments that attaches the sesamoid bone to the pastern bones are
the distal sesamoidean ligaments.
Horse with a
prominent concave shape of the backbone, usually just behind the
withers (saddle area).
racing equipment. Also applied to stable gear.
Horse pulled up sharply by its rider because of being in close
Permanent, indelible mark on the inside
of the upper lip used to identify the horse.
Male horse used at breeding
farms to determine whether a mare is ready to receive a stallion.
Cords of strong, white (collagen) elastic fibers
that connect a muscle to a bone or other structure and transmit the
forces generated by muscular contraction to the bones.
Diagnostic technique using instruments that
measures temperature differences. Records the surface temperature of
a horse. Unusually hot or cold areas may be indicative of some
underlying pathology (deviation from the normal).
A Thoroughbred is a horse whose parentage
traces back to any of the three founding sires: the Darley Arabian,
Byerly Turk and Godolphin Barb, and who has satisfied the rules and
requirements of The Jockey Club and is registered in "The American
Stud Book" or in a foreign stud book recognized by The Jockey Club
and the International Stud Book Committee. Any other horse, no
matter what its parentage, is not considered a Thoroughbred for
racing and/or breeding purposes.
Procedure (laryngoplasty) used to suture the arvtenoid cartilage
out of the airway. See roaring.
Ready to race.
Race used to give a horse a level of fitness
that cannot be obtained through morning exercises alone.
Conformation flaw in which
the front of the foot faces in and looks pigeon-toed, often causing
the leg to swing outward during locomotion ("paddling").
Conformation flaw in which the front of the foot
faces out, often causing the leg to swing inward during locomotion
Strip of cloth-type material
used to stabilize a horse's tongue to prevent it from "choking down"
in a race or workout or to keep the tongue from sliding up over the
bit, rendering the horse uncontrollable. Also known as a "tongue
A Thoroughbred's breeding on its sire's
Person who professes to have, and sells,
advance information on a race. Also used as a verb meaning to sell
or advertise: He's touting the four horse.
Used to describe a fit horse losing its competitive edge.
See entrapped epiplottis.
An individual horse's race, with specific reference
to the difficulty (or lack of difficulty) the horse had during
Used generically to denote a
series of three important races, but is always capitalized when
referring to historical races for threeyear-olds. In the United
States, the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes. In
England the 2,000 Guineas, Epsom Derby and St. Uger Stakes. In
Canada, the Queen's Plate, Prince of Wales Stakes and Breeders'
Stakes. See appendix for a list of races, dates and winners.
Inserting a nasogastric tube through a horse's
nostril into its stomach for the purpose of providing oral
Rear shoe that is turned down
3/4-inch to one inch at the ends to provide better traction on an
off-track. Illegal in many jurisdictions.
Restraining device usually consisting of a stick with a loop of
rope or chain at one end, which is placed around a horse's upper lip
and twisted, releasing endorphins that relax a horse and curb its
fractiousness while it is being handled.
Tying Up (acute
Form of muscle cramps that ranges in severity
from mild stiffness to a life-threatening disease. A generalized
condition of muscle fiber breakdown usually associated with
exercise. The cause of the muscle fiber breakdown is uncertain.
Signs include sweating, reluctance to move, stiffness and general
1) Diagnostic ultrasound: A
technique which uses ultrasonic waves to image internal structures.
2) Therapeutic ultrasound: a therapy to create beat and
A horse racing at shorter
odds than seems warranted by its past performances.
Horse under stout restraint in a race or workout to keep
it from pulling away from the competition by too large a margin.
1) Not raced or tested for speed.
stallion that has not been bred.
withdrawing a horse from intensive training.
Minimum amount at which bidding may start at a public auction.
This varies depending on the sale.
Person employed by a racing association to clean and
care for a jockey's tack and other riding equipment.
(Venezuelan Equine Encephalomyelitis)
Highly contagious disease
affecting the central nervous system that can cause illness or death
in horses and humans.
Down; toward the belly.
Veterinary Medical Doctor.
Race in which only one
Horse that becomes so nervous
that it sweats profusely. Also known as "washy" or "lathered (up)."
Foal that is less than one-year-old that has
been separated from its dam.
condition in which each entrant is assigned a weight according to
its age. Females usually receive a sex allowance as well. (Compare
with a handicap race.)
Horse color, extremely
rare, in which all the hairs are white. The horse's eyes are brown,
not pink, as would be the case for an albino.
Area above the shoulder, where
the neck meets the back.
disease associated with general incoordination and muscle weakness.
Can be caused by an injury to the spinal cord in the area of the
cervical (neck) vertebrae or is associated with malformation of the
To exercise a horse by
galloping a predetermined distance.
Costly type of x-ray
procedure that gives higher resolution on the edges of bones and
better visualization of soft tissue structure.
Horse in its second
calendar year of life, beginning January 1 of the year following its
Condition of a turf course
with a great deal of moisture. Horses sink into it noticeable.
name for the drug ranitidine, a medication used to treat