'Best Playing Pony'

24. January 2019

Zena's return to polo with the help of Dr Jeffrey Watkins epitomizes the AO mission

A 12-year-old thoroughbred mare named Zena is happily galloping her way to success on the polo field after successful treatment for a career-ending condition—even being named Best Playing Pony in a regional tournament.

Known for her speed, quick acceleration, and lateral movement on the polo field, Zena was in no shape to play polo when she was referred to the Equine Orthopedic Surgery Service at Texas A&M University’s Veterinary Medicine Teaching Hospital.

Owned and ridden by a veteran player at the Houston Polo Club, Zena had developed an arthritic condition in the pastern joint—between the middle and proximal phalanges—of her left hind limb. She had also sustained an acute injury that compounded her lameness to the point she could barely put any weight on the affected leg.

Yet, less than a year after being treated by equine orthopedic specialist Dr Jeffrey P Watkins—current AOVET North America Chair—and his team, Zena was named Best Playing Pony at the US Polo Association’s 2018 Southwestern Regional Classic tournament in May 2018.

Read more​ about Zena's remarkable full recovery demonstrates how AOVET advances veterinary surgery to improve patient lives.