CEM Reported in Wisconsin

Wisconsin animal health officials have reported two cases of contagious equine metritis (CEM) in Mount Horeb to the Office International des Epizooties (OIE, or World Organization for Animal Health). A ProMED-mail post announced the disease occurrence this week.

Taylorella equigenitalis is a Gram-negative bacterium that's responsible for CEM, which causes infertility and abortions in mares and infertility in stallions. Contagious equine metritis is considered a foreign animal disease in the United States, but it has afflicted horses here via imported stallions and semen.

"The affected animals are two Lipizzaner stallions imported into the United States of American from Eastern Europe," the Oct. 16 OIE report said. "The 2 stallions have been continuously maintained at an equine breeding and research facility in Dane County where they recently tested positive for Taylorella equigenitalis during a breeding soundness test" on Oct. 4.

The diagnosis was confirmed using pathogen isolation on cell culture at the USDA's National Veterinary Services Laboratory.

There were 16 other susceptible animals on the premises, which is in the southern part of Wisconsin near Madison. Reportedly the animals are all clinically healthy. The report notes that the infected animals had been moved legally, and they have since been quarantined and disinfected.

The OIE report noted that the Office had not recorded an outbreak of CEM in the United States by the OIE since 1997.

About the Author

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief, received a B.A. in Journalism and Equestrian Studies from Averett College in Danville, Virginia. A Pony Club and 4-H graduate, her background is in eventing, and she is schooling her recently retired Thoroughbred racehorse, Happy, toward a career in that discipline. She also enjoys traveling, photography, cycling, and cooking in her free time.

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