Sunday, November 17, 2013

Horses Exposed to Equine Herpes Located at Aqueduct Racetrack

From the state Department of Agriculture and Markets:

Two horses that were potentially exposed to an Equine Herpes Type 1 (EHV-1) positive horse at Parx Racing in Bensalem, PA, have been located at Aqueduct Racetrac.k

At this time, these horses have been examined by a veterinarian and are not showing signs of illness. These horses will be in isolation off-track with daily monitoring by Commission and New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) officials. The horses that were in the same barn at Aqueduct as these potentially exposed horses are also being closely monitored daily for signs of illness by track officials.

EHV-1 is a common viral infection which can cause respiratory disease, abortion in broodmares, death in newborn foals and in rare instances, a neurological form of herpes. It may be spread by close contact with an infected horse or by objects contaminated by an infected horse.  The virus does not affect people.

If you are the owner, trainer or caretaker of a horse that has been at Parx Racing in the past two weeks, or believe your horse has been potentially exposed to EHV-1, the following guidelines are recommended:

** Check your horse’s temperature twice a day for ten days. If the temperature is 101.5 degrees Fahrenheit or greater, contact your veterinarian immediately.
**  If you wish to test your horse, consult your veterinarian. At this time, the preferred test is PCR analysis performed on nasal swab specimens. Blood samples may also be tested.
** The decision to test a horse not showing signs of disease should not be taken lightly. Due to the ubiquitous nature of EHV-1, many horses will test positive for presence of the virus and not develop the disease. Also, a single negative test has limited value in demonstrating whether or not a horse will become ill or may be shedding the virus.
** Look for neurologic signs, respiratory signs, loss of bladder tone (urine dribbling) or poor tail tone.
 If any of these signs are seen, call your veterinarian immediately and then call the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets at (518) 457-3502.

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