A Lane County, Ore., horse has died from and four others from the same stable have tested positive for neurologic equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1), Oregon animal health officials announced late yesterday (March 10).

A statement from the Oregon Department of Agriculture indicates that all 10 horses residing on the affected property have been quarantined, and those showing signs of disease are being treated. There is no indication that the virus has spread to other horses beyond those being quarantined, the statement said.

“At this point in time, the investigation shows that this is an isolated incident confined to the animals now under quarantine,” said Oregon State Veterinarian Brad LeaMaster, DVM, PhD. “Equine veterinarians in the state are well aware of this virus and are trained to take the proper steps when a horse is showing symptoms.”

LeaMaster said the exposed horses have not been moved from the property in more than two months. The horse that died had originally been purchased from an owner in Benton County, Ore.; the previous owner has been contacted and reports no signs of illness in any of their horses.

“The Lane County stable owner and all horse owners have been very cooperative and supportive of the disease control actions taken” LeaMaster said. “A neurologic EHV-1 diagnosis certainly gets the attention of equine veterinarians and horse owners. We have had occurrences of the disease in Oregon in the past. I’ve noticed what seems to be a higher degree of awareness of the EHV-1 disease with horse owners than there was just a couple a years ago.”

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