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2 Washington horses positive for influenza – The Horse

Two horses in Clallam County, Washington were recently confirmed to have tested positive for equine influenza after being purchased at a livestock market.
Two horses in Clallam County, Washington were recently confirmed to have tested positive for equine influenza after being purchased at a livestock market. | AdobeStock

Two horses at a private facility in Clallam County, Washington, were recently confirmed to have tested positive for equine influenza. The horses were purchased at a livestock market and are under veterinary care.

EDCC Health Watch is an equine network marketing program that uses information from the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC) to create and disseminate verified reports of equine diseases. He EDCC is an independent nonprofit organization supported by industry donations to provide open access to information on infectious diseases.

About equine influenza

Equine influenza is a highly contagious respiratory disease that infects horses, ponies and other equids, such as donkeys, mules and zebras. The virus that causes it is transmitted through the saliva and respiratory secretions of infected horses. Horses are often exposed through horse-to-horse contact; aerosol transmission through coughing and sneezing; and contact with contaminated human hands, shoes, or clothing or with contaminated implements, buckets, or other equipment.

Clinical signs of equine influenza infection may include high fever (up to 106°F); dry, cutting cough; depression; weakness; anorexy; serous (watery) nasal discharge; and slightly enlarged lymph nodes. Consider monitoring your horse’s health at shows by taking his temperature daily, which can help you detect signs of infection early and take appropriate steps to reduce the spread of the disease.

Vaccination is an important and inexpensive way to protect your horse. US Equestrian requires proof that horses have received the equine influenza vaccine within six months prior to attending competitions or events sanctioned by the organization. Your veterinarian can help you determine what other vaccines your horse might benefit from.

In addition to vaccinating, following strict biosecurity protocols can help reduce your horse’s chances of infection and illness. Such measures include quarantining new equines arriving at stables, disinfecting buckets and equipment, and avoiding nose-to-nose contact between horses.

Click here to read common questions and answers about equine influenza.