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How Great Is The Risk to My & Others Horses? GOOD UPDATE

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  • How Great Is The Risk to My & Others Horses? GOOD UPDATE



    I self-care board at a private farm, along with another husband/wife team. They have two 4-y/o geldings and a 10 m/o colt (soon to be gelded). I have two mares. All of us adhere strictly to our vaccination and deworming schedules, as well as yearly Coggins.

    Shazam....today we see a note on our board from the farm's manager. "There is a new horse in the middle pasture. Bella."

    Turns out this is a mare that was "given" to the manager's wife. Normally no big deal. Part of their deal with the farm owner when they took over as managers was that she could have a horse. BUT.....

    This mare is a neglect case. She has no vaccination record, no Coggins and is underweight. To quote my fellow boarder who talked to the manager, she has "something going on with her anus." Oh great....

    As of now, the 3 geldings and my one mare are in an upper pasture separated from this mare, and my Percheron is on a small dry lot at the back of the property -- So there has been no horse-to-horse contact. However, the managers do touch our horses--sometimes have to move them for mowing, etc. (we know in advance if it happens) --or just in passing to love on them. They can't seem to understand why the four of us are quite angry that they'd bring an unvaccinated/tested horse to the farm and don't think that our horses are in any jeopardy.

    We disagree. What say you?

    If this mare turns out to have strangles or another infectious disease, how long will our horses have to stay on the farm?

    Thanks
    Last edited by ChocoMare; May. 12, 2009, 02:48 PM.
    <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

  • #2
    honestly, it doesn't freak me out allll that much. Go to a random trail head, local show, etc- mingle with other horses- you have no clue where they've been or what they are toting. Busy horse show facility...how clean are those stalls, anyway?

    They are separated now, meh.

    Comment


    • #3
      Actually, I think it is far more likely that YOUR horses will give something to her than vice versa.

      Your horses are vaccinated and healthy.

      She's unvaccinated and unhealthy - she's the one who is at risk - her immune system may be weak. Every time your horses leave the property, or you or the other boarders pet other horses and then come to your barn - you will be exposing the new horse to disease.

      Obviously the lack of a negative Coggins is illegal as well as a risk.

      Rabies is another risk.

      Strangles - may or may not be a risk.

      EHV-1 - mmmm... .may or may not be a risk - but to her, mostly.


      I don't remember the procedures for a strangles outbreak - it may or may not be the same as what we do in my state.

      You should probably implement basic biosecurity measures. Your state ag dept website should have free information for you to print out. If not - let me know and I'll email you the stuff from my state's website. It's pretty basic common sense stuff. Wash hands, wash feed pans, isolate horse, don't share stuff, etc.

      Hope the horse gets vet attention and recovers her health.
      Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
      Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
      -Rudyard Kipling

      Comment


      • #4
        I vaccinate my gelding so that he can go to a bachelor party in Tijuana hosted by his drug dealer.

        We follow the Buddhist approach: "Its easier to cover your feet in leather than to cover the world in leather."

        Your horses, of course, are the one's covered in pharmaceutical leather. They have the advantage of vaccinations, worming and general health. The Shazam has already happened, so I'd watch the mare and chill as best I could.

        It does suck (and is common) that no one believes in the anal person's hype until they have seen the consequences of casual farm management for themselves.

        Can they be convinced (perhaps just to make the point) to use hand sanitizer when moving between the new mare and on-farm horses for a reasonable quarantine period? Chances are they won't do that in practice, but it might not be bad to impress them with the PITA consequences of not being more careful about admitting new horses.

        A fussy suggestion I know, but perhaps a proactive one.

        Best of luck to you and your horses.
        The armchair saddler
        Politically Pro-Cat

        Comment


        • #5
          Yeah, I'd be pissed.

          You spend all that money and make an effort to keep your horse protected, and then someone comes in and throws a big ol' monkey wrench in everything.

          As to how much risk there actually is, who knows? The horse could be fine. Or not.

          I understand sometimes unexpected things happen, horses need to be cared for and they have to go somewhere. You can't exactly keep them on the back porch until they get a clean bill of health. But that doesn't keep me from worrying about my own horse's safety.

          If it were me, I'd have a talk with the BO, pronto, to get clear on what the procedure is going to be. It's fine if maybe they didn't realize people would be upset, but now that they are aware I'd expect them to deal with it. I'd want to know when they plan on getting mare examined and vaccinated.

          I started to say that if after all that they still don't see what the big deal is, I'd be moving asap. But I guess you don't even know if it's safe to do that! Yikes. I'd probably talk to my own vet too, just to see what precautions you should take and what the actual risks are.

          Comment


          • #6
            Well considering the other horse is not sick acting or looking, the others are right...your horses are at minimal risk. I would however expect the BO to get a coggins pulled asap at least and catch up vaccinations also. I try hard to isolate new horses when I can if they have a questionable history but sometimes it is hard to do it.

            I once boarded my horses at a veterinarian's barn. I came one day to find a horse staggering around so sick it was head pressing in the stall beside my $20,000 event horse. I nearly had a baby when I asked why it was sick and what it had, and she said, I don't know!!!! Horse died a day later and we never did know what it had. God was I pissed off and moved my horse to a stall farther away asap. Then another time she brings a sick horse in to doctor that ends up having Potomac Fever...which I realize is not contagious but honestly...that was a bit much. To say the least it was not a well run barn and I did not stay at that barn for long.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Seven-up View Post
              Yeah, I'd be pissed.

              You spend all that money and make an effort to keep your horse protected, and then someone comes in and throws a big ol' monkey wrench in everything.
              Well, she's protecting her horses by vaccinating and worming them, not by preventing them from ever coming into contact with other horses. What good is all the effort and all the money spent if she then can't risk exposure to another horse?

              Comment


              • #8
                What do you think your horses might catch from this mare? They're vaccinated right?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Androcles View Post
                  Well, she's protecting her horses by vaccinating and worming them, not by preventing them from ever coming into contact with other horses. What good is all the effort and all the money spent if she then can't risk exposure to another horse?
                  That depends on whether or not she brings her horses places or not. She might go to shows, or she might never take them off the property. I don't know what she does with her horses. Not all boarding situations are the same. Some are busy barns with horses coming and going all the time. Others are small operations and the same 5 horses live there for years. But in any case, I think it's reasonable to expect the head honcho at a boarding barn to take appropriate measures to keep all the horses safe.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I am with you on this Choco Mare, I would be steaming mad...this horse has had no care, and stuff like dryland distemper does not need horse to horse contact to spread...and with no vaccination, no Coggins....and probably was loaded with parasites....some are killed by deworming, some are not. What the flip was that person thinking?

                    Horses in good health with vaccinations are at lower risk, but there is still a risk if the horse has something serious going on. On the other hand, could just be neglect, and everything might work out well. It's one thing to be kind, though, and another to put someone else's horse at risk, and someone else's adherence to the "rules" at such a low premium. What's done is done on this one, but I would want to be sure it did not ever happen again.
                    What would you try if you knew you would not fail?

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Yes, my horses are vaccinated. ALWAYS. But... there is no vaccine for EIA and rabies is active in Georgia.

                      Up until a month ago, neither of us had trailers so never went anywhere. Consequently we didn't do Strangles because we were a tight, closed herd with no exposure to other horses. That's all changed. I've been in a barn where strangles went through every horse. I've seen enough snot and puss to last me a lifetime.

                      Now, both of us have trailers and want to go off property to ride and visit. We're not going anywhere until I hear from our vet what the real scoop is with this mare and how long Dr. Rose believes we need to stay on farm. I have plans to trailer out this Sunday for a ride, as well as on the 30th and again on the 6th (Sunkissed Acres' open house). I pray I can still make SKA's Open House.

                      Thankfully I already had an appointment for our vet to come out this Saturday to float Tank's teeth but, get this: they wanted ME to call my vet and have her see their mare. Where's the fruitbat? Said I'd gladly split the barn fee but it's their horse, so they need to pick up the phone and call. Should have just told them to have the daggum vet out there TODAY but wasn't thinking clearly in the heat of the moment.

                      I will be going out armed this evening with Clorox Hand Sanitizer and bleach for shoe baths, as well as signs to post at our horse's pasture gate IF YOU TOUCHED BELLA, DO NOT TOUCH THESE HORSES. I'll also give them the protocol for basic bio-security.

                      I guess the bottom line for us is the blatant and poor animal husbandry practice, disregard for the lives of our horses (as well as the neighbor's 8) and, as MVP said, "casual farm management." Not to mention the "eh, who cares about you boarders" attitude and disrepect.

                      We are not just "boarders." We do alllll the work there, have improved that barn a hundred fold in four years and care for it as our own. Heck, WE'RE the ones who bought new geese to keep their lone goose company after the death of the other 2. WE'RE the ones who change their animals water and scrub the tubs, because we know they'll never do it.

                      These people are NOT horsey (despite what farm manager's wife claims), they do not care for their animals to any great extent (yes, they're fed and have water but that's it. They don't vaccinate or deworm the goats, have never had a vet out for a sick one [manger just shoots 'em], etc.)

                      I guess I just wanted some assurance that we weren't totally off-base here. I can only pray that my friend/other border didn't go totally off the rails at the manager last night and find herself being kicked out.
                      <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        When you go on trailrides, horse shows, and clinics, they do not require a vaccination record before letting the horses on the grounds. Half the shows I go to don't even require a coggins, and you don't need a coggins unless the place you are going to requires it. I wouldn't worry about it.

                        Keep them seperate and the only thing I would worry about is strangles which your horses should be vaccinated for.
                        http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I think the Op is right to be worried, but there's no reason to become a drama queen about it and cause offense by posting signs singling out the BM's particular horse as the root cause of anyone's possible ills. Since she has talked to them about the situation and is going to discuss it with them further, that is rude and overkill. It wouldn't surprise me to hear she has been paid back in kind at a later point in time by at least one of them.

                          The biggest help you can provide for your horse is to carry a spare pair of shoes and change into them once you are at your horse's turnout paddock gate. Do what you are going to do in that paddock, then leave, and immediately change shoes just outside of the gate. If you have already walked into his paddock in your barn shoes, taken him into the barn, or out to the riding ring, or grazed him outside of his paddock, then he has already been exposed to whatever is on your farm, and the damage is done. It all travels everywhere on the bottom of anyone's shoes, on communal manure forks, muck tubs, etc.

                          I am assuming you have done the Strangles vaccine and the booster by now since you changed your vaccine protocol a month ago. Keep in mind that, regardless of how much money you have invested in veterinary care, vaccines only mitigate the course of the disease and are no silver bullet to full protection. Also keep in mind that while whatever is on the soles of your shoes and your horse's feet can travel to any barn, the process also works in reverse. You are a greater threat to that rehab horse than she is to you, as you can bring back who knows what on the soles of your feet, his feet, and the bottoms of your trailer tires. She, to anyone's knowledge, has no coverage whatsoever, while your horse is wearing plate armor. I can understand being ticked off at the BM's for not vet checking her before bringing her onto the farm, and not enforcing strict quarantine policies. I would be too. But really, it's too late to be pissed at the horse. She is what she is, and already had whatever she has.

                          Strangles can have up to a 69 day incubation period. If she has come from a farm with it on it, or your vet is concerned about anything else she may have brewing (with stress and her lack of thriftiness, that may very well be a concern), then it may be best if you sit this trail ride out and stay home.
                          "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein

                          http://s1098.photobucket.com/albums/...2011%20Photos/

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Thanks Chief. Have no intention of being rude or unkind. Guess my "ire" came out above. Tisn't my intention.

                            I will be sharing the bio-security measures protocol with everyone, tho, so we all do the same things to avoid sharing critters....just in case.

                            Reallllllllly hoping this all blows over real quick, that the mare is fine (albeit under the weather) and things go back to normal.
                            <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              No problem At a younger age I would have been zinging off the roof about it. I'm a little older now, and don't zing as quick as I used to (or do much of anything else as quick as I used to, for that matter ).

                              Good luck!
                              "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein

                              http://s1098.photobucket.com/albums/...2011%20Photos/

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Hehehe...guess that's why at 43 I did (mostly) keep my mouth shut and allow things to chill before totally over-reacting. Better to rant here with my COTH sista's then to the manager.
                                <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I would matter most to me where the mare came from - someone's back yard where she had been for the past 10 years? An auction?

                                  If it was a backyard I'd be cautious but not freaked. If she came from an auction, HELL YEAH I'd be flipping!


                                  Good luck - I hope that she comes around quickly, and has no infectious nasties to share with her new barn buddies!
                                  -Jessica

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Just where do you folks put all the horses from the "rescue" threads if they can't be on the same farm as the rest of the horses? Sigh.

                                    Standard procedures when we get a questionable one in is to (1) segregate from other horses; (2) wash hands after handling; and (3) get the vet out ASAP to do whatever is necessary to evaluate and vaccinate horse. It sounds like the BO is doing 1 and 3. I would be the annoying person who leaves a big bottle of hand sanitizer at the new horse's gate for everyone to share.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Too much drama for my llama.

                                      Is it really too much to ask for you and the other terrified boarders to handle your own horses exclusively until the vet gives the all clear? You can do that in a kind way (hey, I appreciate what you're trying to do for Bella but until the vet says she's healthy, we'll just cover all our horse chores, ok?) or in an anal retentive obnoxious as Hell way with foot baths and foolishness about bio-security... After all, by your own admission, you all do ALL the work. If that's actually true- how is it possible these idiots ever touch your horses?

                                      Go to the trail ride, I assure you there are ample plenty horses there with not one vaccination in who knows how long. Or hide under your bad clutching your vet manual. Me, I'm gonna ride

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        I guess, in the rush of typing last night, I didn't make something clear:

                                        None of this "drama" expressed here has been verbally expressed BY ME to the farm manager. Twas my co-boarder who freaked out and went off the deep end. I chose to listen, digest, come here for info to see if there was merit and let a night go by to chill out.

                                        I chose the higher road and believe I did the right thing, because I am now armed with better information.

                                        ETA - P.S. we do all our own chores. We are 100% self care.
                                        <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                                        Comment

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