Two northern Colorado horses test positive for herpes |

Two northern Colorado horses test positive for herpes

Staff reports

LAKEWOOD, Colo. – State Agriculture Department officials have quarantined two Weld County locations while they investigate how two horses contracted equine herpes.

One horse was euthanized after showing severe neurological signs associated with Equine Herpesvirus, and the second horse is under observation in a bio-secure location, according to a Department of Agriculture news release.

“The Department is taking quick and appropriate actions to control and mitigate this disease,” State Veterinarian, Dr. Keith Roehr said in the release. “We will continue to trace the movement of these horses and those horses they came into contact with in order to protect Colorado’s equine industry.”

Both horses had recently attended the National Cutting Horse Association’s Western National Championships in Ogden, Utah. Colorado ag officials are working with the Utah State Veterinarian to investigate the location as a point of interest for the infection.

The most common way for Equine Herpesvirus to spread is by direct horse-to-horse contact. The virus can also spread through the air, contaminated equipment, clothing and hands.

Symptoms include fever, decreased coordination, nasal discharge, urine dribbling, loss of tail tone, hind limb weakness, leaning against a wall or fence to maintain balance, lethargy, and the inability to rise. While there is no cure, the symptoms of the disease may be treatable.

The virus is not transmissible to people. However, it can be a serious disease of horses that can cause respiratory, neurologic disease and death.

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