Deadly Neurologic Equine Herpesvirus-1 Outbreak in France

Four horses have been euthanized and a fifth horse is recumbent following an outbreak of equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) in a boarding stable in northern France, according to the treating veterinarian. Quarantine has been established and will continue for at least three more weeks.
Jeroen Lissens, DVM, said seven of the 63 horses at the stable have tested positive for the disease since July 14. All but one had been vaccinated against EHV-1 within the past year. Boosters were administered immediately to all horses at the site.

"What's particularly concerning about this outbreak is that every horse affected so far has shown neurological signs, including ataxia and incontinence," Lissens said. "This leads us to believe we're dealing with a mutated strain that we have not yet seen (in France)."
Laboratory analyses and an autopsy are underway in an attempt to reveal more details about the virus and its possible origin.


About the Author

Christa Lesté-Lasserre, MA

Christa Lesté-Lasserre is a freelance writer based in France. A native of Dallas, Texas, Lesté-Lasserre grew up riding Quarter Horses, Appaloosas, and Shetland Ponies. She holds a master’s degree in English, specializing in creative writing, from the University of Mississippi in Oxford and earned a bachelor's in journalism and creative writing with a minor in sciences from Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She currently keeps her two Trakehners at home near Paris. Follow Lesté-Lasserre on Twitter @christalestelas.

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