LQHBA Insider - By Martha Claussen July  8, 2020

LARRY FINDLEY, DVM

LQHBA board member Dr. Larry Findley Sr. has been a practicing veterinarian in Southwest Louisiana for over four decades. He could write a book about his experience of providing quality care for small animals and racehorses since founding Delta Equine Center in 1983.

The Vinton, Louisiana facility boasts a staff of 45 employees, including eight members of the Findley family. Open six days a week for scheduled care as well as 24 hour emergency for large animal equine. Dr. Findley is assisted by Dr. Philip Appleton along with sons, Dr. Larry, Jr. and Dr. Troy who mainly head up the Racetrack Sports Medicine team. Son Craig, serves as the practice manager, overseeing a myriad of operational duties with the Veterinary Hospital, Reproduction Center and Small Animal Veterinary Hospital while fourth son Brad is the Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber Specialist and grandson Caleb Findley is the Stallion Manager.

The diagnostic services at Delta Equine Center are highly regarded. State-of-the-art equipment includes MRI Scanning, Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber and Digital Radiology. Delta Equine Center is the only facility in Louisiana equipped with the specialized Rotating Open C Magnet MRI Vet-MR. Surgeries for small and large animals are performed at their onsite hospital and Delta Equine Center is also highly respected for their Equine Reproduction program.

As an adjunct professor, Dr. Findley offers veterinary students opportunities for out rotations, preceptorships along with internship probabilities making Delta Equine a teaching hospital as well. High school students interested in veterinary medicine are encouraged to come shadow.

In addition, Delta Equine Center also offers breeding services. They stand an accomplished stallion roster, including Rc Me Leaving You, Agouti, Brace For Bernal and Bp Wagon Train.

The COVID-19 outbreak impacted a tremendous number of businesses and individuals, but fortunately, Delta Equine Center has continued to service its clients.

"We are considered an essential business, so have been open since the statewide restrictions were put into effect," said Findley. "It has affected the practice, maybe as much as 50%, but we are still providing care and emergency services."

Craig Findley adds some protocols have been added to ensure the safety of employees and prevent the spread of the virus.

"For the small animals, we have required that visitors remain in their vehicles with a staff member bringing their pets into the clinic," he said. "We are following sanitation guidelines to the highest level and disinfect all areas constantly."

Craig did not follow in his father's medical footsteps; he graduated with a degree in electrical engineering and laughs when he is asked about the family connections at Delta Equine Center.

"Every business class will warn you about working with your family," stated Craig. "But those professors never met my dad! His work ethic is through the roof and he and my mom, Anita, raised us all with integrity and respect. We work hard, play hard and give all the glory to God. Our family is blessed, even though none of us can keep up with dad!"

LQHBA champion trainer Kenneth Roberts Sr. is both a good friend and client of Dr. Findley.

"I've been taking my horses to Delta Equine since the early 80's," said Roberts. "Their practice has come a long way and that's a tribute to Doc and his family."

Roberts credits the many ways that Dr. Findley has facilitated the growth of breeding and racing in Louisiana.

"He's been a great supporter of our industry," added Roberts.

Dr. Findley has always been respected, not just as an equine surgeon, but as a valued leader and contributor to the Quarter Horse industry. Nationally, he is an AQHA director and member of the racing committee. He is a longstanding LQHBA board member, currently serving as secretary/treasurer for the state's breeding and racing association.

He generously gives his time serving on the many committees as well as the annual LQHBA Yearling Sale. More importantly, he is a friend to many horsemen and a kind and empathetic listener when it comes to challenges in the industry. On a daily basis, he has taken private as well as conference calls regarding the resumption of live racing in Louisiana. The month of May is usually a very eventful time for horsemen with the Lassie and Laddie Futurities run at Delta Downs. However, Quarter Horses have not raced in Louisiana since March 16 at Harrah's Louisiana Downs. It has been a time of great concern for everyone.

"Discussions are taking place every day," acknowledged Findley. "Once the racetracks re-open, we need to look at revising dates for the futurities, so horsemen have enough time to get their horses prepared. We want to give owners hope."

As would be expected, Findley is positive and hopeful that Louisiana racing and breeding will withstand the unprecedented challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We are strong and will move forward," Findley stated. "The important thing is for us to stay united and work together."

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The LQHBA Insider is a monthly feature written by Martha Claussen for www.lqhba.com. She served as publicity director at Sam Houston Race Park for ten years. She continues to be active in writing, fan education and Quarter Horse racing publicity in Texas, Louisiana and other regions in North America.