An Orlando boarding stable is under a state imposed quarantine after three horses tested positive for the Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1), according to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
State officials say the index horse began showing neurologic symptoms a week after it arrived at Crown Pointe Equestrian from North Carolina. The warmblood tested positive for EHV-1 and continues to receive treatment at the University of Florida. Mike Short, DVM, Equine Program Manager for the State of Florida said, “we believe the horse most likely recrudesced due to stress of shipment and possibly other complicating medical factors.”
Two of the horse’s new barn mates at the hunter/jumper stable began showing neurologic signs and also tested positive for EHV-1. They are doing “very well” and continue their recovery at the stable. An additional 33 horses call the farm home.
Four horses from Crown Pointe Equestrian attended a horse show in Wellington on August 17, according to state officials. About 100 horses participated in the competition. All owners were reportedly notified by show officials and told to monitor their horses for “a minimum of 14 days.”
Symptoms of the infection include fever, decreased coordination, nasal discharge, urine dribbling, loss of tail tone, hind limb weakness, leaning against a wall or fence to maintain balance, lethargy, and the inability to rise. While there is no cure, the symptoms of the disease may be treatable. Horse owners should watch their horses carefully and call their veterinarian immediately if any abnormal signs are observed.
“Using sound bio-security practices is very important in preventing the spread of the virus and these preventative measures should be implemented in daily management practices,” said Dr. Short.
There are currently no other cases of EHV-1 reported in the U.S., according to Florida state officials.