EHV-1 Response and Update

March 10, 2021

The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine is actively responding to recent cases of the neurologic form of equine herpesvirus infection (EHM) in central Florida, and wish to provide resources about the disease. 

Currently, there are two confirmed EHV-1 cases in FloridaBoth horses originated from a single premise, and only one has exhibited neurologic signs. In response to these cases, FDACS has restricted movement on and off the affected premise. There are no other known cases of EHM in Florida at this time but we are monitoring the situation closely. A negative EHV-1 test result was announced yesterday from a horse stabled at the World Equestrian Center (WEC) may have been exposed, the WEC has provided updates and recommended increased biosecurity measures to keep horses safe.

Equine Herpesvirus (EHV-1) is spread from horse to horse through contact with nasal discharge or spread as aerosol droplets. Horses can also contract the virus by coming into contact with contaminated surfaces such as stalls, water, feed, tack and transport vehicles.

We are currently recommending the following biosecurity precautions for owners of all horses traveling or showing throughout the state:

  1. Make sure your horse is up to date on vaccinations.
  1. Monitor horses for clinical signs and take and record the temperature twice daily. Anything greater than 101.5F is considered a fever.
     
  2. Immediately isolate any horse(s) showing clinical signs of EHV or EHM, including fever, nasal discharge, uncoordinated gait, and/or difficulty urinating .
     
  3. If your horse displays any of the above clinical signs, halt all horse transport on or off your farm and contact your veterinarian to evaluate your horse and to propose a comprehensive biosecurity protocol.
     
  4. Increase biosecurity measures that include extensive disinfection of surfaces and equipment that come in contact with affected horses.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands between interacting with horses
  • Eliminate shared feed tubs and watering troughs
  • Minimize the use of shared equipment and tack

EVH-1 RESOURCES FOR VETERINARIANS

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