Equine Virus Confirmed in Southeast Minnesota

Posted at: 04/01/2014 11:26 PM
Updated at: 04/01/2014 11:35 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- A contagious virus spreading through horses in the state has made its way to Southeast Minnesota.  Several horses have been euthanized after contracting the equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1).

We've learned there is one confirmed case that started in Freeborn County.  According to Dr. Paul Anderson, with Minnesota Board of Animal Health's equine program, the horse has since moved back to its home in Steele County for treatment.

The University of Minnesota Equine Extension reports another infected horse from Cedar Rapids was in Freeborn County at one point before returning home.  They also say there have been eight confirmed cases in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa with tests pending for other horses.

EHV-1 causes neurological and respiratory problems.  Signs to look out for are fever, coughing, weakness, and urine dribbling.  A list of other symptoms can be found here.

The virus does not effect humans or other animals, and owners are being advised not to travel with their horses for two weeks.  Officials also recommend owners wash their hands and change their clothes before coming into contact with other horses. 

To watch ABC 6 News' previous story on EHV-1 click on this link.