Equine herpes virus in several horses in Florida

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -  Authorities say six cases of a highly contagious horse herpes virus have been linked to a major show jumping event in Florida, and hundreds of horses have been quarantined as a precaution.

   Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam said Thursday horse owners and veterinarians are cooperating with "extraordinary measures" to contain the spread of the Equine Herpes Virus. He says six of seven confirmed cases were linked to the nine-week competition in Ocala, north-central Florida, currently under way until mid-March.

   The virus, also known as EHV-1, can result in neurological disease, respiratory disease, abortion and neonatal death. It cannot be transmitted to humans.

   The first horse with the influenza-like condition was taken for treatment and examination Feb. 20 at a Florida veterinary hospital and is reported to be doing better.
 

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