Published Date: 2012-08-01 15:42:07
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> West Nile virus - USA: (CA) equine, conf.
Archive Number: 20120801.1224403
WEST NILE VIRUS - USA: (CALIFORNIA) EQUINE, CONFIRMED
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: 31 Jul 2012
Source: The Horse [edited]
The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has confirmed the 1st case of West Nile virus (WNV) in a horse in 2012, according to a statement on the organization's website.
"On 26 Jul 2012, the CDFA Animal Health Branch confirmed the 1st positive equine West Nile virus case in Stanislaus County," the statement read. "The 2-year-old unvaccinated filly displaying severe neurologic signs was euthanized."
In a blog post published today (31 Jul 2012), California State Veterinarian Annette Whiteford, DVM, said: "Each year, we find ourselves using this sad occasion to remind horse owners to have their animals vaccinated. It offers them maximum protection against the disease. And once vaccinations occur, horse owners should be checking regularly with their veterinarians to make sure they stay current."
Clinical signs for WNV include flu-like signs, where the horse seems mildly anorexic and depressed; fine and coarse muscle and skin fasciculations (twitching); hyperesthesia (hypersensitivity to touch and sound); changes in mentation (mentality), when horses look like they are daydreaming or "just not with it;" occasional somnolence (drowsiness); propulsive walking (driving or pushing forward, often without control); and "spinal" signs, including asymmetrical weakness. Some horses show asymmetrical or symmetrical ataxia (incoordination on one or both sides, respectively). The equine mortality rate can be as high as 30-40 percent.
The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service reported 83 cases of WNV in U.S. horses in 2011, with 15 of those cases being identified in California horses.
Date: 31 Jul 2012
Source: California Department of Food & Agriculture [edited]
On 31 Jul 2012, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) Animal Health Branch confirmed 2 additional cases of West Nile virus (WNV), one a 3-year-old unvaccinated filly in Glenn County and another a 3-year-old unvaccinated colt in San Joaquin County.
For 2012, a total of 3 horses have been confirmed positive for WNV. The positive horses are located in Glenn, San Joaquin, and Stanislaus counties. One of the positive horses has been euthanized.
CDFA continually monitors and investigates equine neurological cases for the presence of WNV in California. CDFA urges horse owners to consult their veterinarian concerning a WNV vaccination program to ensure maximum protection of their horses.
[It is very important to get one's horses vaccinated before the mosquito season starts. I well remember a Louisiana horse owner who, on being told that the death of one of his horses was due to EEE, saying: "Well, I had better get the rest vaccinated." It's a bit late at that point.
In 2011, a total of 15 horses were confirmed positive for WNV. The horses were located in the following counties: Fresno (5), Kern (1), Los Angeles County (1), Placer (2), Merced (3) Tulare (1) and Yolo (2). Eleven of the 15 positive horses recovered. Four of the positive horses died. - Mod.MHJ
A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/r/1hcv.]