The good news. We r going to our first star event at chattahooche. The bad? We r entered, paid and packed to go to Colorado for our next event. Seeing friends at same time. Who else is going? We need to go out that way to pick up sons furniture from college.....thought we could kill three birds w one stone. So whatcha think.
I will be there. At the moment, I know there is concern about the EHV-1 from the cutting show in Utah. There are no travel restrictions or warnings in Colorado. There is no "outbreak." The barns quarantined are about 100 miles north. There is even the second of 2 "A" shows going on at the horse park this week. It should be nice weather.
Heck, I am hitting Spring Gulch every week to school.
The term "outbreak" is a bit of marketing fluff. Most vets around here are concerned but will say there is no full "outbreak." There are 6 (only 2 diagnosed) possible cases in CO and all horses are in quarantine. One horse from the 2 confirmed was euthanized. The confirmed cases were at the cutting show in Odgen Utah.
Yes, one should take precautions, as they should at any show they travel to. Given EHV-1 is predominantly transmitted via direct contact, the same things you use to keep a horse clean under FEI rules should work well.
Colorado State University Announces Precautions against Equine Herpesvirus, Canceled Events
FORT COLLINS - Colorado State University’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital is restricting non-emergency equine and camelid veterinary appointments, beginning immediately, as a precaution to prevent exposing the facilities, horses and camelids to the equine herpesvirus type 1. This precaution, along with added infectious disease prevention biosafey strategies, is being implemented to keep the VTH equine hospital main facility and equine and camelid clients free from infection. This precaution is designed to prevent horses from multiple locations from coming into contact with each other, based on concerns about the current widespread outbreak.
The VTH’s main equine hospital is not housing any equine cases suspected to have been exposed to equine herpesvirus – this is merely a precaution to protect the facility and client horses. As an added precaution, the main equine hospital also has implemented high levels of biosafety practices to protect the grounds and client horses.
CSU’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital routinely screens all client horses for signs of or exposure to any infectious disease. Any potential cases of infectious disease are treated in a separate isolation hospital unit specifically designed for treating infectious disease cases, such as equine herpesvirus 1 cases. The unit is not connected to the main hospital and is currently being used to house horses that may have been exposed to the virus.
Equine unit personnel are contacting clients with non-emergency appointments in the hospital and through the ambulatory unit to reschedule those visits. The VTH and ambulatory equine unit will continue to accept emergency cases. Hospital leadership will monitor the outbreak and reassess when it is appropriate to accept non-emergency appointments on an ongoing basis.
The precautions have been put in place based on best practices because of the current widespread outbreak of equine herpesvirus type 1 and the aggressive nature of this strain of illness. The current outbreak impacts most of the Western United States and Canada.
Colorado State University veterinarians are recommending that all horse owners restrict transportation of their horses and restrict access to their horses and grounds until the current outbreak subsides. Horse owners also are advised to consult with their veterinarian about EHV1 biosecurity and health concerns.
Anyone with questions about appointments and available veterinary care at the Colorado State Veterinary Teaching Hospital should call (970) 297-5000.
Information about Colorado-specific travel recommendations, quarantines and outbreak epidemiology should be obtained through the Colorado Department of Agriculture. More information from the Department of Agriculture is available at http://www.colorado.gov/ag.
CSU Equine Science Programs Canceled as Precaution
The Colorado State University Equine Sciences Center has temporarily closed its doors to horses entering or leaving the property on CSU’s Foothills Campus to prevent risk of spreading the equine herpesvirus. The length of the restriction is not known and will depend on the course of the current outbreak.
The precaution means that two riding clinics scheduled at the B.W. Pickett Equine Center in May have been cancelled.
The cancelled events are:
- A two-day jumping clinic with grand prix show jumper and Olympic medalist Greg Best, which had been scheduled May 17-18;
- A two-day Western reining clinic with world champion Todd Crawford, which had been scheduled May 21-22.
About 50 riders and their horses were expected to participate in the two events at the Equine Center.
Officials have not yet determined whether popular annual horse camps for young riders, organized by equine-sciences faculty, will go ahead as planned at the Equine Center. The camps are currently scheduled June 13-18 and June 19-24. For information about the camps, participants may contact Megan Grieve, Equine Sciences Program coordinator, at (970) 491-8373.
Restricting movement of horses onto the CSU property is a protective precaution for all of these animals.
Equine herpesvirus is a neurological variation of the herpes virus; it is spread through the air and through contact with infected horses. Horses that acquire the virus may display symptoms including weakness and loss of balance. Some severely infected animals ultimately become unable to stand and must be euthanized.
No horses owned by CSU have been exposed during the first wave of the current virus outbreak.
Development of potential secondary cases elsewhere in Colorado will help university officials determine whether to lift restrictions on horses coming to or leaving CSU property. Officials hope that such restrictions, as well as quarantines enforced by state veterinarians, will stop the outbreak so that horse activities may resume.
That I have no use for them, does not mean, that I don't know them and don't know how to use them.
I'll be there too! Reed, are you debuting the new ride?
Oh, hell no. I need to learn to keep him in the ring first.
P.S. A veterinary examination of literally EVERY horse at the CHP "A" show today showed no indication of fever etc. that would be a sign of EHV-1. According to the vets, over the next 2-3 days they will have a better handle on what is really happening. Don't freak out yet!
Please please please. Don't underestimate this! It is AWFUL. I kept my horses at Mill Creek Stables near LA in 1984. Just before the LA Olympics, my friend's horse showed symptoms of being weak behind. So she shipped him up to the Alamo Pintado clinic in Santa Ynez for a diagnosis. By the time he was diagnosed, other horses had been exposed and a major SoCal veterinary hospital put themselves into quarantine. Soon other horses at Mill Creek began to show similar symptoms. This was a major deal as in about 2 weeks horses would begin to ship in for the Games. We had one vet living on the property, several of us also moved in, the gates were locked and people were only able to drop off medications, food for us, laundry etc. No one went in or out. UC Davis vet hospital sent down a group of vets to address it as well. By the end of the first week, I think there were about a dozen horses affected and we moved them all to one barn. This lasted for several weeks.
The condition of the horses worsened quickly and many were no longer able to remain on their feet. It soon became clear that those who could remain standing had a better chance of survival so we rigged slings in the stalls to keep them up. My mare wedged herself in the corner of a stall and kind of squatted there. We ran continuous IVs to keep them hydrated & give them nutrition. We pumped them full of IV DMSO to combat CNS swelling. We catheterized them so they could pass urine (in fact, a few clients who were physicians soon became really adept at this--as did I). We had dead horses taken away and put down horses that were clearly not going to make it. It was gut-wrenching. After I checked on my mare at night, I cried myself to sleep in my sleeping bag.
My girlfriend and I were lucky; our horses survived. But they were never the same. The neurological damage to their hindquarters meant, for example, that they never jumped again. I was able to breed my mare for a few (quite nice) foals, but both of them became lower level school horses. That was about the limit of their athletic ability (PS--mine had won her first event before she was stricken).
Apparently, the origin of the outbreak was a mule who was asymptomatic, but a carrier. So taking temps isn't going to give you any protection. Vaccinations provide no protection. I wouldn't go to a competition at this time for any reason.
In fact, my neighbor - with whom I often ride - just brought her cutting horses back from a trainer in northern CA. And brought the news from UT with her. Then, two other things happened: 1. A couple horses in Bakersfield (about 100 miles away) died and 2. her trainer called and said to lock down her mares as their farrier had shod them after shoeing horses returned from UT and the trainer might have used the same tack on some of them as on other horses that might have been exposed. She also said that a cutter returning from a show in CO was refused entry into CA because of the disease. My trainer - who also trains mules - is skipping the major mule competition of the year in Bishop because she won't risk her/her clients' animals. And I'm not going over for lessons because she's instituted a nobody in/nobody out policy at her barn. UC Davis has offered to do blood tests for vets at a reduced rate to ensure that people won't hesitate to do it in order to get a handle on this 'outbreak.'
Because don't mistake this; that's what it is. And if people don't act quickly and responsibly, it can get way worse real fast.
I do not doubt your concern but do not assume we are as ignorant as you imply. The vets involved are from two of the top teaching hospitals in the US and they are keeping on top of things continuously.
At the moment nobody anywhere has any actual understanding of the extent of the issue. Folks are making knee jerk decisions without evening knowing what is happening. Among the rumors I heard today:
1) 45 horses were dead
2) 10 horses were dead
3) The state has banned all horse travel
When I talk to the vets in charge they have no idea how those came about. As of 10pm, Colorado has ONLY 3 CONFIRMED (via VHF test) cases and all went to the cutting horse competition in UT back in April.
Like any viral illness, common sense and informed decisions are the key. Even UC Davis has explicitly stated, "With our current outbreaks of EHV-1, the interpretation of the positive predictive value of the diagnostic technology employed and the "test result" obtained are problematic at this time. Even given the sophistication of our current molecular testing capabilities, the interpretation of PCR viral detection for EHV-1 should be done only in the context of the presenting clinical signs for disease in the horse being tested." Thus, a fever is still a primary indicator of the EHV-1.
Who is your trainer? I admire her for pulling out of Mule Days and I know what a big deal it is. My mule was going to make his "real" show debut at Mule Days but I would much rather keep him home than take any chances, it's just not worth it.
Major kudos to your trainer for erring on the side of caution. Rumors or not, there is no show out there whereby the participation in it outweighs the health of the horse/mule.
There is nothing wrong with keeping an animal at home when something like this is going on. Lost show fees are nothing when it comes to protecting the life of the animals we love.
While I agree that people should not panic, it would certainly seem prudent to be cautious, given that it's not clear that manifestation of clinical symptoms/ neurological disease is either immediate or 100% for infected animals (meaning that clinically normal appearing horses could still be vectors). Likewise, there is some risk of infection without direct contact. These sorts of lags make sorting out the epidemiology notoriously more complicated.
"With deep regret the organizing committee of the Spring Gulch Horse Trials has decided it is in the best interest of the horses to cancel this weekend's show held May 21-22, 2011. We have spent countless hours talking with vets and the board members of the Central Colorado Chapter (CCC) regarding the recent cases of Equine Herpesvirus (EHV-1). We believe it is too soon to know the extent of this disease or how severe this episode is going to be and because of this we are not willing to risk your horse's health. A weekend of fun is not worth your horses' life."
I doubt this will do anything to quell out-of-control rumors, but at the same time, it's probably a smart move.
I am not a rumor guy and tend not to panic. But I am concerned of the spread of the deseas, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, a case in Canada.
That Ogden show is a pretty big deal, with horses from a wide range of states taking part.
There is no way to tell how far this deseas has been spread.
I would be very carefull at the current stage of the outbreak, because we do not have enough info about how far in the country this deseas has been spread.
That I have no use for them, does not mean, that I don't know them and don't know how to use them.
Ray--I would never assume that you're ignorant. What I wanted to do was put a "real life" face on an experience that, at this time, is probably an academic issue for many folks. Right now, I'm lucky enough to have the best horse I've ever owned. We take enough chances with our horses given the sport in which we engage; I'm not taking any additional chances with him.