Chicago Equestrian - News, Events, Contacts and Marketing Services

EHV-1 Virus Outbreak and Quarantine Update

Photo courtesy of Wisconsin Equine Clinic

March 4, 2013 provided by

A horse participating in the Horse Shows in the Sun (HITS) horse show in Ocala was referred to the University of Florida, College of Veterinary Medicine after showing clinical neurological signs on February 20th. The horse subsequently tested positive for the Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1), wild-type strain. Currently, the horse is in stable condition and continues to be treated at the University of Florida.

Five additional horses that are linked to the HITS Show in Ocala have tested positive for EHV-1 wild type. One is located at Redfield Farm in Ocala and four are located at Miles Away Farm in Loxahatchee, Florida. One of the positive horses located at Miles Away Farm, has developed neurological signs and is being treated at the University of Florida, College of Veterinary Medicine. While the additional positive horses were detected after leaving the Showgrounds, they resided in Tent 3 and Tent 6 in proximity to Tent 7 which housed the index case. With evidence of more widespread exposure, the HITS Showgrounds have been placed under quarantine.

An additional horse, with no clinical signs of disease that is linked to the HITS showgrounds, has tested positive for EHV-1 and is located at Calder Farms, in Ocala. That horse continues to remain clinically healthy with no signs of EHV-1 infection.

A horse not believed to be linked with any of the HITS-associated quarantined premises has also been tested positive for EHV-1. This horse is located at Tequestrian Farm in Wellington, Florida.

The Division of Animal Industry is continuing their disease investigation and developing protocols for surveillance and quarantine release measures. An Incident Command Team comprised of state and federal personnel has been mobilized to implement appropriate control measures.

Two additional premises were quarantined yesterday (Sunday, March 3rd), as they were housed in Tent 3 on the HITS Showgrounds during the known exposure period.

Quarantined Farms/Premises**

            ·  HITS Showgrounds, Ocala – Entire facility

            ·  Up Country Farm/Synergy Farm, Ocala

            ·  Montera Farm, Ocala

            ·  Flutterby Farm, Ocala

            ·  Foxwood Farms, Pinellas Park

            ·  Black Forest Farm, St. Augustine

            ·  POD-F Farm (Littlewood Farm), Wellington

            ·  Brookmore Farm, Oviedo

            ·  Kings Ridge Farm, Reddick

            ·  Redfield Farm, Ocala

            ·  Miles Away Farm, Loxahatchee

            ·  Calder Farms, Ocala

            ·  Hard Ford Farm, Reddick

            ·  Chestnut Hill Farm, Ocala 
**The quarantines listed above do not necessarily encompass the entire premises. Premises Released from Quarantine

  • · FEI tent at Wellington Showground’s – February 28, 2013
o The quarantine was initially placed due to two potentially exposed horses that had moved to the tent from

Tequestrian Farm and subsequently moved back to Tequestrian farm the same day. These horses were tested the next day and were negative for EHV-1. The quarantine was released due to these horses being in the FEI tent for a short period of time and testing negative for the virus, indicating no exposure occurred.

  • · Tequestrian Farm-March 4, 2013
o The farm was initially quarantined due a horse testing positive for EHV-1. This horse was imported from another state and isolated at the farm on arrival. No connection was made between this horse and the HITS Showground EHV-1 cases. The horse never developed neurological signs and the quarantine was released after fourteen days with no evidence of transmission, no clinical signs on the farm and all horses testing negative on the premises.

Known State Movement Restriction for Horses

We are advising horse owners and trainers to contact the venue of destination for any additional requirements prior to travel.

Recommendations for horses that have shown at HITS since February 5, 2013 include close monitoring of animals, reporting of fevers greater than 101.5oF (38.6oC) and strict bio-security measures for at least 21 days after departure from HITS.

We are asking all those in the equine community to practice prudent bio-security on their farm and to report any suspected cases of EHV-1. For reporting, you may call 850-410-0900 Monday through Friday 8:00am-5:00pm and 1-800-342-5869 after hours and weekends.

 Wellington, Florida

Wellington, FL - February 23, 2013 - A horse at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) has been tested and received a negative result for EHV-1. The horse was previously stabled in Barn 7 at the HITS Post Time Farm in Ocala, Florida, and due to that circumstance and an initial symptom of fever, the horse was proactively put into isolation by Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP), management company of the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival, where the horse is competing.

The FEI tent is no longer under quarantine.

At this point in time, the biosecurity protocols and restrictions listed below are still in place. However, while horses are still required to have a 48 hour health certificate, this can be a health statement on official letterhead of a licensed veterinarian and does not specifically have to be a State of Florida health certificate.

Biosecurity Protocols and Restrictions Still In Place:

Effective immediately, no horses will be allowed to enter PBIEC property (both WEF and GDF grounds at The Stadium) without a health certificate or statement of health on official licensed veterinarian letterhead within 48 hours of arriving. It is mandatory that all horses shipping into the PBIEC (both WEF and GDF grounds at The Stadium) arrive during daylight hours. 

Those arriving at the PBIEC who need health certificates or statements of health can either call Palm Beach Equine Clinic (PBEC) to receive a current health certificate or can get one from the PBEC veterinarian on the grounds.

ESP is asking all equestrians, especially those stabling off PBIEC property, to enact biosecurity protocols and be proactive and responsible for their horses, including daily temperature charts.

There is currently no restriction on horses leaving the property.

An integral part of a showing environment includes healthy horses. Exhibitors, especially those traveling long distances, can contribute to that healthy environment by following some basic recommendations listed below. 

1) A current negative coggins test. Please renew before it expires, and not just before it is necessary to leave the state. It is strongly recommended that all horses be vaccinated for Equine EHV-1 (either modified live or killed vaccine) no sooner than 7 days prior and no later than 90 days prior to entering the show grounds. Most EHV-1 vaccines are only considered effective for 90 days. Check with your veterinarian about which vaccine you use.

2) A health certificate or statement of health within 48 hours is required for all horses entering the property. All horses should be able to produce proof of vaccine, preferably labeled on these health certificates or statements. Those who need health certificates when they arrive can contact Palm Beach Equine Clinic at 561-793-1599 or contact the PBEC vet on the show grounds.

3) You should be able to document your horses normal temperature before arrival. Please do not ship horses with elevated temperatures. It is recommended that you establish a log of temperatures taken at least twice daily. If there is an elevated temperature for more than a 24 hour period, please consult your local Veterinarian immediately.

4) Every effort should be made to minimize stress and commingling of horses shipped long distances. Extra hours on a horse van, or moving from stable to stable, is the fastest way to compromise your horses' and your neighbors' horses' health.

5) Any horse on the show grounds with a fever of unknown origin or of suspicious origin must be reported to ESP, LLC Management. It is always better to err on the side safety.  Isolation stalls will either be available on the grounds or at a local veterinary practice if the need arises.

6) Please take the time to review equine good hygiene practices and express its importance to your groom in everyday care.

Ledges Winter Series will continue as planned with heightened BioSecurity Protocol in place

Showplace Productions and Ledges Sporting Horses are closely monitoring the report of positive cases of EHV-1 at the winter circuits in Florida. While we consider the welfae of horses at our events paramount, we believe it is possible to ensure te safety and health of all of our equine competitors by maintaining the strict protocol detailed here.

Until further notice:
No horses will be allowed onto the property who are arriving from the premises listed as quarantined by the Florida Department of Agriculture. (Listed above)

Horses arriving in the area or returning to the area from Florida must layover at a location outside Florida for at least 10 days and have fresh Health Certificates issued before arriving at the competition.

All horses arriving on the show grounds must have a health certificate issued within the last 7 days and a current negative Coggins test is required for all horses arriving from outside Illinois.

All trainers and owners at the Ledges Winter Series must maintain a twice daily log of the horses temperatures and report any abnormalities immediately to management. Any horses with a fever of unknown or suspicious origin will be quarantined in a separate stabling wing and evaluated by veterinarians from Janesville Equine Hospital.

Furthermore, It is stronly reommended that all horses be vacinated for he Equine EHV-1 no sooner than 7 days prior and no later than 90 days prior to entering Ledges Sporting Horses.  

Please continue to monitor the webite and facebook page for further updates on the EHV-1 cases and any additional measures required to ensure the health and saftey of our equine competitors.