Interim ICC Report – April 2019 #05 (05.04.19)
Interim ICC Report – April 2019 #05 (05.04.19) – Report from Ireland on Piroplasmosis, UK on Equine Viral Arteritis (EVA) & USA on EHV-1 Abortion & Strangles
Piroplasmosis (Babesia caballi)
On 5 April 2019, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine reported to the OIE an outbreak of piroplasmosis. Further details have been reported for one case, recently imported from Europe. The onset of clinical signs was confirmed on 16 February 2019. Two cases were confirmed and one death in a group of 14. Please see below the verbatim report from OIE:
‘Following diagnosis, the competent authorities undertook a comprehensive epidemiological investigation. The mare was imported to Ireland from another European country on the 18 of January 2019. She was brought to premises in Co. Kildare. She was accommodated at the Kildare premises with three other mares. On the 24 of January she displayed clinical signs including pyrexia and limb oedema and was removed from the paddock and placed into isolation. She was attended to by a private veterinary practitioner. She remained in isolation from 24 to 31 of January. Following a positive response to treatment she was returned to the paddock on the Kildare premises on the 1 of February with the three aforementioned mares. On the 14 of February the mare was transferred to a premises in Co Kilkenny for foaling where she was housed in a single stable in an open barn with six other mares. In order to rule out any spread of the Babesia caballi organism from the mare or her foal to any other susceptible animals while resident in Ireland, the competent authorities identified all other equidae that may have contact with the mare. Four mares travelled with the affected mare on her original journey to Ireland. These were traced and examined for any clinical evidence of infection with Babesia caballi by an official veterinarian from the Irish competent authority. Samples were taken from each of the mares, allowing sufficient time to ensure that the incubation period of Babesia caballi had elapsed. These samples were tested at Ireland’s Central Veterinary Research Laboratory and all returned negative results following PCR and ELISA testing for both Babesia caballi and Theileria equi between the 13 and 14 of March 2019. In addition, the eight mares that may have had contact with the affected mare in both the Kildare and Kilkenny premises were also examined by an official veterinarian. Samples were taken from these mares, again allowing sufficient time to ensure that the incubation period of Babesia caballi had elapsed, all of which returned negative results following PCR and ELISA testing for both Babesia caballi and Theileria equi between the 13 of March and the 2 of April 2019. Therefore, the investigation did not reveal any evidence of disease spread in the susceptible population as a result of Babesia caballi infection in a single imported equine animal. The mare was transported back to the country of origin on the 1 of March 2019.’
Equine Viral Arteritis (EVA)
Please see below a press notice from Defra released on 4th April 2019:
‘On 4 April 2019, the UK’s Chief Veterinary Officer confirmed two cases of Equine Viral Arteritis (EVA) in non-Thoroughbred stallions on a premises in Dorset. There is no risk to public health.
Restrictions on breeding have been put in place on the animals to limit the risk of the disease spreading and further investigations are ongoing. The animals affected are not racehorses and there is no indication that upcoming racing events will be affected.
Chief Veterinary Officer, Christine Middlemiss, said:
We have taken swift action to limit the risk of the disease spreading by restricting the movement of the animals and their semen. A full investigation is underway to determine the source and possible spread of the infection. Owners of mares and stallions are urged to have their animals tested before they are used for breeding.
These findings remind us that we must all be vigilant for signs of disease and follow strict biosecurity measures.
You can help prevent the disease spreading by:
- vaccinating stallions against the disease – talk to your vet for advice
- practising good biosecurity on your premises
- owners of mares and stallions are urged to have their animals tested before they are used for breeding.
If you suspect equine viral arteritis please get in touch with the Animal and Plant Health Agency. If you wish to have your horse tested on a precautionary basis contact your private vet and have your animal tested at an accredited laboratory.’
For more information on EVA including its notifiable status in the UK, clinical signs, transmission, prevention, diagnosis and control, please see https://codes.hblb.org.uk/index.php/page/30.
Equine Herpes Virus-1 (EHV-1) Abortion
The Idaho Department of Agriculture has confirmed a case of EHV-1 abortion in a 13-year-old Quarter Horse mare in Bannock County on 26 March 2019. The mare which, was located at a private equine training facility, had no history of travelling within the previous six months. The mare had been in-contact with two other horses on the premises, neither of which had displayed any clinical signs. She had a history of having been vaccinated against EHV-1 in her fifth and seventh month of pregnancy.
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Affairs has confirmed a case of strangles in a two-year-old Standardbred mare in Montmorency County, that presented with an abscess (location not stated) on 22 March. The mare which is recovering, had not been vaccinated against strangles. No quarantine has been imposed on the affected premises.
International Collating Centre