WNV 101

West Nile virus is transmitted to horses through bites from contaminated mosquitoes. Not all contaminated horses present scientific indicators, however people who do can exhibit:

  • Flulike indicators, the place the horse appears mildly anorexic and depressed;
  • Fine and coarse muscle and pores and skin fasciculation (involuntary twitching);
  • Hyperesthesia (hypersensitivity to the touch and sound);
  • Changes in mentation (psychological exercise), when horses appear like they’re daydreaming or “just not with it”;
  • Occasional drowsiness;
  • Propulsive strolling (driving or pushing ahead, usually with out management); and
  • Spinal indicators, together with asymmetrical weak point; and
  • Asymmetrical or symmetrical ataxia.

West Nile virus has no treatment. However, some horses can recuperate with supportive care. Equine mortality charges can attain 30-40%.

Studies have proven that vaccines may be efficient WNV prevention instruments. Horses vaccinated in previous years want an annual booster shot, however veterinarians may advocate two boosters yearly—one within the spring and one other within the fall—in areas with extended mosquito seasons. In distinction, beforehand unvaccinated horses require a two-shot vaccination sequence in a three- to six-week interval. It takes a number of weeks for horses to develop safety in opposition to the illness following full vaccination or booster administration.

In addition to vaccinations, homeowners ought to work to cut back mosquito inhabitants and breeding areas and restrict horses’ mosquito publicity by:

  • Removing stagnant water sources;
  • Dumping, cleansing, and refilling water buckets and troughs repeatedly;
  • Keeping animals inside throughout insect feeding occasions (sometimes early within the morning and night); and
  • Applying mosquito repellents permitted for equine use.
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