Regulations Amending the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations: SOR/2020-230

Canada Gazette, Part II, Volume 154, Number 23

SOR/2020-230 October 22, 2020


The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, pursuant to subsection 204(9) footnote a of the Criminal Code footnote b, makes the annexed Regulations Amending the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations.

Ottawa, October 21, 2020

Marie-Claude Bibeau
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Regulations Amending the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations


1 Paragraph 1(d) of the schedule to the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations footnote 1 is amended by adding the following in alphabetical order:

Coming into Force

2 These Regulations come into force on the day on which they are registered.


(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)


The Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations (the Regulations) are designed to protect the integrity of pari-mutuel betting on horse races authorized under section 204 of the Criminal Code. Drugs and medications administered to race horses could affect the outcome of a pari-mutuel race. Drugs that are veterinary medications approved for sale in Canada may be administered to a horse but, with few exceptions, including vitamins and some antiparasitic and antimicrobial agents, must not be present in a horse’s system when it races.

This amendment adds the prohibited drugs amlodipine, ciclesonide and methadone to section 1 of the schedule to the Regulations.


There are no appropriate alternatives.

Benefits and costs

The impact of this amendment will be positive, because the prohibition of a potential performance-altering drug will continue to protect the bettor, the integrity of the racing industry, and the credibility of the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency’s (CPMA) Equine Drug Control Program.

There are no significant costs or environmental impact associated with this regulatory amendment.


The CPMA consults with its drug advisory committee, consisting of veterinarians, pharmacologists and chemists, when proposing to add a drug to the schedule. The committee supports this regulatory action.

Amlodipine is an approved veterinary drug used to reduce high blood pressure in cats. It could potentially be used in horses with heart problems to help an unsound horse run better than it otherwise would. There are other amlodipine products licensed for human use.

Ciclesonide is an inhaled steroid used to treat breathing problems in horses caused by asthma. This drug could be used to treat an unsound horse, leading it to overexert itself during a race, potentially causing further lung issues. There are other ciclesonide formulations approved for human use.

Methadone is an opioid painkiller licensed for cats. Opioids are potent painkillers that can mask pain caused by an injury, thereby allowing an unsound horse to race better than they would otherwise, or increase their risk of breaking down. Formulations intended for humans are also available.

Due to the potential of these drugs to be used to influence the performance of a race horse, the CPMA, in consultation with its drug advisory committee, has determined that these drugs should be added to the list of prohibited drugs in the schedule to the Pari-Mutuel Betting Supervision Regulations.

Provincial racing commissions continue to endorse the CPMA’s Equine Drug Control Program, including the maintenance of the schedule of prohibited drugs.

Compliance and enforcement

Information on additions to the schedule is provided to all industry sectors, so that they know which substances to avoid when treating horses scheduled to race.

Compliance with the CPMA’s Equine Drug Control Program is accomplished by the testing of post-race samples of urine or blood taken from race horses. Positive results are reported to the provincial racing commissions for appropriate action under their rules of racing.

This amendment will not increase the current requirements for compliance and enforcement activities.


Lydia Brooks
Research and Analysis
Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
P.O. Box 5904, LCD Merivale
Ottawa, Ontario
K2C 3X7
Telephone: 613‑949‑0745