Ocala EHV-1: Most Quarantines Released

The majority of the quarantines imposed on some Florida horse farms after equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) was detected in a horse previously stabled at the Horse Shows in the Sun (HITS) facility in Ocala have been released, according to an April 5 statement from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS).

Officials placed the HITS showgrounds under quarantine Feb. 27 after several horses connected to the facility tested positive for EHV-1. Two of the seven developed neurologic signs and were treated at the University of Florida's College of Veterinary Medicine. The remaining five horses were quarantined at their home farms. Additionally, the FDACS quarantined several other facilities housing horses exposed to the disease while at the showgrounds. The FDACS stated that all EHV-1 quarantines would remain in effect for a minimum of 21 days from the last exposure.

In early March and after the appropriate length of time, disease testing began and officials released quarantines if farms met release protocol, the statement said. The following facilities connected to the HITS outbreak have been released from quarantine:

  • POD-F Farm, Wellington (released March 9, 2013)
  • Kings Ridge Farm, Reddick (released March 13, 2013)
  • Chestnut Hill Farm (Wisconsin-based farm, Ocala temporary location released March 13, 2013)
  • Entire HITS showgrounds, Ocala (released March 13, 2013)
  • Up Country Farm/Synergy Farm, Ocala (released March 14, 2013)
  • Brookmore Farm, Oviedo (released March 17, 2013)
  • Flutterby Farm, Ocala (released March 20, 2013)
  • Foxwood Farms, Pinellas Park (released March 20, 2013)
  • Calder Farms, Ocala (released March 20, 2013)
  • Hard Ford Farm, Reddick (released March 20, 2013)
  • Miles Away Farm, Loxahatchee (released March 22, 2013)
  • Redfield Farm, Ocala (entire farm released March 26, 2013)
  • Black Forest Farm, St. Augustine (April 5, 2013)

According to the April 5 statement, just Montera Farm in Ocala remains quarantined in connection with the outbreak.

In the statement the FDACS noted that the organization is "advising horse owners and trainers to contact the venue of destination for any additional requirements prior to travel. Several equestrian events have instituted additional requirements for horses entering the show/competition. These may include shortened dating of certificates of veterinary Inspection or specific vaccination requirements. We are asking all those in the equine community to practice prudent biosecurity on their farm and to report any suspected cases of EHV-1."

About the Author

Erica Larson, News Editor

Erica Larson, news editor, holds a degree in journalism with an external specialty in equine science from Michigan State University in East Lansing. A Massachusetts native, she grew up in the saddle and has dabbled in a variety of disciplines including foxhunting, saddle seat, and mounted games. Currently, Erica competes in eventing with her OTTB, Dorado.

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