New York legislation calls for Salix ban for racehorses

Cross-posted from the Blood-Horse

Written by TOM LaMARRA

A New York lawmaker said he will introduce legislation banning use of “performance-enhancing drugs” such as the anti-bleeding medication furosemide, or Salix.

The bill sponsored by Democratic Sen. Thomas Duane outlines penalties, including a permanent ban from racing after three violations. Duane said it is modeled after federal legislation, which to date hasn’t progressed in Congress.

The bill would “prohibit all performance-enhancing drugs, except those to treat infection, on any horse which enters a race in the State of New York,” Duane said. Like the federal bill, it makes no differentiation between performance-enhancing and therapeutic medications.

New York in 1995 was the last state to ban Salix, which then was called Lasix. The therapeutic medication is now used by roughly 95% of Thoroughbreds that race.

“We ban all other athletes in every other sport from taking performance-enhancing drugs both for their safety and to maintain the integrity of their sports,” Duane said in a statement. “Yet we embrace the idea of dispensing Lasix to horses so they won’t have a nosebleed or develop blood in their lungs during a big race. This is unacceptable.”

Groups in the United States are pushing for a phase-out of Salix over time, but there is no industry consensus. Horsemen generally oppose the plan, and no state lawmaker until now has proposed a ban.



The Chemical Horse, Special Report by Jane Allin

2 thoughts on “New York legislation calls for Salix ban for racehorses”

  1. If a horse needs drugs to race that horse should not be racing. I don’t like the racing industry at all because of what is done to most of these young horses. As we all know drugs cover up injuries and there are plenty of unscrupulous trainers out there that don’t care what happens to the horses, just as long as they cross that finish line in the money. If the horse drops dead after it crosses that line so be it, at least the owner got their monies worth out of the horse. My hatred of the racing industry no’s no bounds. If a horse is whipped constantly as it is racing around the track that forces the animal to run flat out because of the pain of the beating it’s getting. No wonder their lungs bleed. These animals don’t run like this normally. The public that attends these races are so used to seeing those whips flying they never associate it with the pain these horses are feeling. These horses are deathly afraid of the whips and if you could look below the skin you would see welts and bruising. The public ignores it because they can’t see it. Take away the whips and you would see which animal is the natural born runner.


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