Approved by the AAEP Board of Directors, August 2009.
The AAEP recommends that all horses that die or are euthanized at a licensed racetrack or training facility undergo a complete necropsy by a board-certified veterinary pathologist at an accredited veterinary diagnostic laboratory. Necropsy findings should be entered into The Jockey Club Equine Injury Database.
It is recommended that regular communication and interaction between the on-site regulatory veterinarian(s), practicing racetrack veterinarians, and the pathology staff at the diagnostic laboratory be established. This will enhance the necropsy process and the resultant information. It will also facilitate collaborative efforts when specific research interests are identified.
Transportation options for necropsy cases should be identified prior to need. Storage, pending transport, and transportation of the body should be managed in such a way that tissue degradation and the development of post-mortem artifacts are minimized. Care should also be taken to employ good infection control practices with respect to equine infectious and/or zoonotic disease.
If time or distance constraints preclude the transport of a deceased horse to the veterinary diagnostic laboratory, a field necropsy is recommended.