Handling Respiratory Disease Outbreaks at Boarding Stables

Respiratory diseases at boarding barns present unique challenges for veterinarians, owners, and farm managers.
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Respiratory disease outbreaks at facilities such as boarding barns present unique challenges for veterinarians, horse owners, and farm managers. Disease can spread quickly through a property’s equine population and beyond, and treating veterinarians must cater services to a diverse group of horse owners and their varying budgets.

To ease the process, Philip Ivens, MA, VetMB, CertEM(Int. Med.), Dipl. ECEIM, MRCVS, with Buckingham Equine Vets, in the UK, presented his suggestions for handling these outbreaks while at the British Equine Veterinary Association’s 51st annual Congress, held Sept. 12-15 in Birmingham, UK.

Infectious diseases to watch for include equine influenza, equine herpesvirus 1 and 4, strangles, and equine rhinitis virus. Clinical signs such as fever, nasal discharge, coughing, depression, anorexia, conjunctivitis, and submandibular (under the jaw) lymph node enlargement are often overlooked and are only the tip of the iceberg

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Alexandra Beckstett, a native of Houston, Texas, is a lifelong horse owner who has shown successfully on the national hunter/jumper circuit and dabbled in hunter breeding. After graduating from Duke University, she joined Blood-Horse Publications as assistant editor of its book division, Eclipse Press, before joining The Horse. She was the managing editor of The Horse for nearly 14 years and is now editorial director of EquiManagement and My New Horse, sister publications of The Horse.

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