Welcome to EqUIFLUNET
Our aim is to improve awareness of equine influenza amongst veterinary surgeons and horse owners. Flu can have a huge impact on competitive events, but may also cause severe problems in pet horses if not recognized quickly.
We are an OIE reference laboratory for equine flu and provide support to other laboratories around the World. We also collaborate with an international network of laboratories and experts to help select virus strains suitable for use in commercial vaccines. This work is dependent on your equine nasal swab samples, so please call your veterinary surgeon if you think your horse has flu and have them sent in. The Horserace Betting Levy Board supports our work, so we can offer free diagnostic testing for suspected cases. Sign up HERE
Twitter - follow us @Equiflunet to find out about outbreaks in the UK and abroad. Please spread the word and let us know if you hear of any outbreaks close to you.
Tell-Tail – register for this text alert scheme provided by the Animal Health Trust and Merial Animal Health. Alternatively text your Name, Practice name and postcode to 07797 801 863.
Please be on the lookout for the classic influenza signs including a harsh dry cough, nasal discharge, pyrexia and inappetance - particularly in the affected areas, or in horses that have recently been transported. Signs may be mild in vaccinated horses.
Vets - please remember we can test your samples for free through the surveillance scheme. Click here to sign up. You can send in samples to us for free diagnosis by using your equine flu swabbing kits and by taking paired blood samples. If you need any more information or more kits and submission forms please contact us.
14 October - Stirlingshire outbreak
On 13th October, the Animal Health Trust confirmed a case of equine influenza on premises in Stirlingshire, Scotland. The affected animal was a five month old unvaccinated filly, imported from overseas ten days previously. Clinical signs were first noted on 7th October and consisted of a harsh cough, mucopurulent nasal discharge and pyrexia. The animal was examined and sampled on 12th October and has a co-infection with Streptococcus equi. It has been in indirect contact with two other vaccinated animals, who have also presented with signs of respiratory disease. The positive diagnosis was confirmed by qPCR on a nasopharyngeal swab. Control measures have been implemented.
30 September 2016 - Fife outbreak
On 30th September, the Animal Health Trust confirmed a case of equine influenza on premises in Fife, Scotland. The affected animal was a three year old unvaccinated filly, who presented with mucopurulent nasal discharge and mild cough on 24th September and was sampled on 28th September. The case is in direct contact with two other vaccinated horses. The positive diagnosis was confirmed by qPCR on a nasopharyngeal swab. Control measures have been implemented.
23 June 2016 – Kent outbreak
On 23rd June 2016, the Animal Health Trust confirmed one case of equine influenza on a premises in Kent, England. The affected animal was a three-year-old non-vaccinated Irish Sports Horse gelding that had arrived on the premises approximately one week previously from overseas. The presenting clinical signs included pyrexia, coughing and nasal discharge. The case was in contact with three other horses, of which one is not vaccinated. None of the direct contacts have so far shown clinical signs of disease. The positive diagnosis was made by qPCR on a nasapharyngeal swab.
PREVIOUS EQUINE INFLUENZA OUTBREAKS:
Sequence of the HA and NA genes of all viruses isolated during 2015 show them to be similar to viruses isolated in the UK throughout 2014. They belong to the Florida Clade 2 sublineage of H3N8 equine influenza, sharing a substitution at amino acid 144 of the HA protein. Nearly all outbreaks in 2015 were in unvaccinated horses, or those whose vaccinations were not up to date. Keeping up to date with vaccinations will help protect your horse.
FOR FREE INFLUENZA DIAGNOSIS
2016 OUTBREAK MAP