The Queensland Racing Integrity Commission ensures that an on-course vet is available for every race meeting for all codes of racing. Veterinarians monitor animals before each race to ensure they are fit to race, observe their performance during races to watch for injuries or signs of stress, review animals post-race to check on their recovery and supervise the collection of samples for drug analysis.
Should a racing animal incur an injury on a racetrack a veterinarian will provide immediate assistance and advice to ensure that the health and wellbeing of the animal remains the first priority. Inspections of animals are undertaken under the direction of race day stewards to investigate poor racing performance.
Veterinarians work closely with stewards to ensure that animal welfare is maintained on and off course, and are involved in assessments of alleged cases of animal cruelty or neglect. They also participate in stewards’ inquiries where matters of animal welfare or drug doping are involved.