Equine Herpes Virus Outbreak
The popular "HITS" horse show in Ocala continues, while one horse that's infected with the equine herpes virus remains in stable condition at the University of Floridas' Large Animal Hospital.
Some veterinarians in the Ocala area said they haven't had many calls since word of the outbreak came out last week, but other vets have had an increasing number of calls.
"Our clients are quite concerned and everybody wants to know what they can do to protect their horse," Dr. Sam Ferguson.
Longtime veterinarian Dr. Ferguson said the equine herpes virus is quite common and this isnt the first time a horse has tested positive for EHV-1 in Marion County.
"Maybe five or six years ago we had one other outbreak in the community. It's been here before," said Dr. Ferguson.
Now one horse is known to be infected with the virus.
An 11 year old gelding, from Jacksonville tested positive for the EHV-1 wild-type strain.
Dr.Ferguson explains how the virus can spread.
"It's through contact of an affected horses' nasal secretion. Most of the clinical research shows maybe up to 35 40 feet or something, but it doesn't just flow through the air and the whole county is going to be infected with it," said Dr. Ferguson.
There have been no deaths and only that one horse has tested positive
Technical coordinator for "HITS" Ocala Jerry Dougherty said about 50 horses are currently quarantined in a tent.
"It's going to take a few more days to make sure there is nothing going on there , but it's great news so far that there has been only that one positive test and there is no temperatures in tent 7 and all the horses there are healthy and doing great," said Dougherty.
Dougherty said they are taking the outbreak very seriously.
The area is fenced off and no other horses are allowed near the tent.
"Certainly we are seeing more and more people who are relaxing, taking a deep breath and coming and showing their horses and going back and having a good time and having the experience of horse showing in florida is suppose to be," said Dougherty.
No additional restrictions have been ordered by the state of florida or any other states.
The links below will provide you with more information about the current equine herpres virus outbreak.
- Five More Horses Positive For Equine Herpes Virus in Florida
- One Case of Equine Herpes in Ocala Showgrounds
- Two More Ocala-Area Farms Linked To Horse Virus
- 12th Annual Florida Equine Institute and Allied Trade Show
- Equine Rescue Wants Justice for Starved Horses
- Distemper Outbreak Hits Levy County
- Death Toll Rises to Two in Marion County from Meningitis Outbreak
- Woman Files Lawsuit Against Pharmacy Linked to Meningitis Outbreak
- Three Marion County Facilities Linked to Meningitis Outbreak
- West Nile Virus Found in Alachua County