Health

Is Your Horse Unprotected? Be Aware of Core Equine Disease Risks.

If your horse does not receive annual vaccinations against the five core equine diseases, his life could be at stake.

From Corporate Partner Zoetis

Invisible diseases can cause more damage to your horse than you realize. Photo from Zoetis

You love your horse like a family member; however, your horse is facing grave disease dangers that you may have overlooked, which could cost him his life.  

The threat of deadly equine diseases like rabies and West Nile is closer than you think. Don’t leave your horse exposed — help protect him through annual vaccinations against the five core diseases: rabies, Eastern and Western equine encephalomyelitis, tetanus and West Nile.   

“A horse that is alone out in the pasture can still get rabies, can still get tetanus, can still get West Nile, and can still get Eastern and Western [equine encephalomyelitis],” said Bonnie R. Rush, DVM, MS, DACVIM, Interim Dean at Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “It’s important for horse owners understand the consequences of not vaccinating their horse for these diseases.”

Core diseases can be a death sentence.

The fatality rates are grim. With the statistics outlined below, horse owners should strongly reconsider leaving their horse’s survival to chance.

  • Rabies: 100%1
  • Eastern equine encephalomyelitis: 90%1
  • Western equine encephalomyelitis: 50%1      
  • Tetanus: 75%2
  • West Nile: 33% 1

Core disease vaccination is the foundation for equine wellness.

Viral respiratory and neurologic diseases are the leading preventable causes of death in horses.3 No matter what your horse does – pleasure or performance – or where he lives, exposure to core disease vectors like mosquitoes, soil and wild animals cannot be prevented. Vaccination is the only way to help protect horses from these deadly diseases. The core vaccination guidelines were created by the American Association of Equine Practitioners, the leading group of equine veterinarians. Annual vaccinations are recommended as part of overall equine wellness.

In this video, you can hear more insights from Dr. Rush about core equine diseases and protection through annual vaccinations. Be sure to discuss your horse’s vaccination needs with your veterinarian, and visit CoreEquineDiseases.com for additional information and resources.  

1 American Association of Equine Practitioners. Vaccination Guidelines. https://aaep.org/guidelines/vaccination-guidelines. Accessed April 16, 2018.

2 MacKay R. Tetanus. In: Sellon DC, Long M, eds. Equine Infectious Diseases, 2nd ed. St. Louis, MO: Saunders Elsevier, 2007:368-372.

3 Baseline Reference of Equine Health and Management in the United States, 2015. United States Department
of Agriculture. https://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/nahms/equine/downloads/equine15/Eq2015_Rept1.pdf.
Accessed April 16, 2018.

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