New emergency system to help save injured horses

Photo: CTK

Specialists in Brno have presented a new emergency transport system aimed at saving horses that suffer tendon injuries or fractures. In the past, rescuers had to improvise to save injured horses in the Czech Republic, but now a new vehicle modified to make transport easier is going into use. The first such specialised service in central Europe should help save horses which would otherwise have to be put down.

A little earlier Jan Velinger spoke to Dr Zdeněk Žert, of the University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences in Brno, one of the main initiators of the project:

“It was originally my idea to help horses that have problems, to help ease their transport to our clinic. In cases of serious injury to the tendon, joint, or the bone, you need to support the horse during transport. We introduced the device to make things easier for the animals.”

Are similar such devices used elsewhere in this part of Europe?

Photo: CTK
“Well, they are used in Switzerland – which was the source of inspiration - and also in Italy. A similar system is also used in Great Britain. Outside it looks like a normal horse trailer, but inside there is a special device which helps support the horse during transport, making use of a special net. We expect that this transporter will be used around 20 times per year. That’s not frequent, but on the other hand fractures or joint injuries are really serious, making it vital for the horse to be safely transported to the clinic.”

Will the device, for example, be used at races?

“Yes. Preventively we will be able to use the device and be ready during races, during competitions, where horse injuries are frequent. The headquarters for the device will be here at our clinic. Besides operating in the Czech Republic, we are also able to operate in western Slovakia, so I think it will be useful.”