A quarter horse displaying neurologic symptoms has been confirmed positive for the neuropathogenic strain of Equine Herpesvirus (EHV-1).
The 4-year old mare located in Contra Costa County was euthanized due to severe symptoms, according to The California Department of Food and Agriculture. The CDFA states an initial epidemiologic investigation indicates no other horses were exposed to the disease. The mare was the sole horse out to pasture with cattle. The agency says it will continue monitoring the situation.
There are no other reports of EHV-1 in California at this time. There have been three cases in the state in 2013 – one in Los Angeles County, San Diego County, and Santa Barbara County. The most recent was in March when a horse at Santa Anita Park was euthanized.
The CDFA recommends horse owners practice proper bio-security when attending any equine event.
Basic bio-security measures include:
· Limit horse-to-horse contact.
· Limit horse-to-human-to-horse contact.
· Avoid use of communal water sources.
· Avoid sharing of equipment unless thoroughly cleaned and disinfected between uses.
· Monitor your horse for clinical signs of disease and report any temperature over 102°F to a veterinarian.
Compliance with these methods is an important factor in reducing risk of exposure to all contagious equine diseases, according to the agency.