Another Texas Horse Tests Positive for Vesicular Stomatitis

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Another Texas Horse Tests Positive for Vesicular Stomatitis

The viral disease can cause blisters and sores in the mouth and on the tongue, muzzle, teats, or hooves of horses, cattle, swine, sheep, goats, llamas, and a number of other animals.

Photo: Brian McCluskey

The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) reported July 3 that it had received confirmation of a second case of vesicular stomatitis (VS) in a horse in Nueces County in South Texas. The first Nueces County horse tested positive for the disease on June 20. 

So far this year, VS has been confirmed in horses residing on seven premises in four Texas counties. The current VS situation began on May 28, when the TAHC announced confirmation of VS in five horses in Kinney County. Shortly thereafter, three horses in Hidalgo County tested positive for VS. On June 17, officials reported that three additional horses in San Patricio County were diagnosed with VS. All affected horses tested positive for the New Jersey serotype.

The newly identified infected premises is currently under TAHC quarantine and affected horses will be monitored by regulatory veterinarians while under quarantine. Premises are eligible for quarantine release 21 days after all lesions have healed. There is no known exposure to other horses around the state, or at any equine events.

The viral disease can cause blisters and sores in the mouth and on the tongue, muzzle, teats, or hooves of horses, cattle, swine, sheep, goats, llamas, and a number of other animals. Lesions usually will heal in two or three weeks. Because of the contagious nature of VS and its resemblance to other diseases such as foot and mouth disease, animal health officials urge livestock owners and caretakers to report clinical signs to their veterinarian immediately. Most animals recover well with supportive, but some lesions can be painful.

Several states have provided the TAHC with information on enhanced entry requirements they are imposing on Texas livestock (including horses) due to the VS cases in Texas. For information about these movement restrictions, contact the state or country of destination and/or visit www.tahc.texas.gov/news/2014-06-05_StateRestrictionsOnTX_VS.pdf.

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