US Federation Prohibits Use of Cannabinoids in Horses Effective Sept. 1

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LEXINGTON, Kentucky, May 14, 2019–The United States Equestrian Federation announced Tuesday that positive tests of cannabinoids in horses has led to a ban on their use, effective Sept. 1.

“Tasked with protecting the welfare of equine athletes and ensuring the balance of competition, the US Equestrian Federation Equine Drugs and Medications Program consistently monitors new products and product claims,” the federation said. “From time to time, new products appear on the equine supplement market claiming to enhance a horse’s performance. Over the last several years, cannabinoids have gained increased attention and have become nearly mainstream.”

USEF Equine Drugs and Medications Rules prohibit cannabidiol (CBD) and their metabolites.

While hemp does not contain more than 0.3% THC, the federation said, it does contain CBD. CBD, both natural and synthetic forms, are likely to effect the performance of a horse due to its reported anxiolytic effects (calming). This substance is no different than legitimate therapeutics that effect mentation and behavior in horses.

“It is for these reasons that USEF prohibits CBD and all related cannabinoids. Horses competing under USEF rules who test positive for natural cannabinoids, synthetic cannabinoids and other cannabimimetics will be considered in violation of GR4 beginning September 1, 2019.”