WNV in Virginia Horses: Fourth Case of 2018 Confirmed

An unvaccinated 22-year-old Tennessee Walking Horse gelding from Smyth County developed an abnormal gait on Oct. 8. His condition has slowly with supportive therapy.

WNV in Virginia horses
West Nile virus is transmitted to horses via bites from infected mosquitoes. | Photo: iStock

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) confirmed a case of West Nile virus (WNV) in a Smyth County horse, the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC) reported Oct. 17. This is the fourth confirmed case of WNV in Virginia horses in 2018.

“An unvaccinated 22-year-old Tennessee Walking Horse gelding developed an abnormal gait on Oct. 8,” the EDCC said. “Serum from the horse was tested using by IgM Capture ELISA at the VDACS Warrenton Regional Animal Health Laboratory. The horse has slowly improved since onset with supportive therapy.”

In 2017 there was just one confirmed case of WNV in Virginia horses, according to USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

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Written by:

Erica Larson, former news editor for The Horse, holds a degree in journalism with an external specialty in equine science from Michigan State University in East Lansing. A Massachusetts native, she grew up in the saddle and has dabbled in a variety of disciplines including foxhunting, saddle seat, and mounted games. Currently, Erica competes in eventing with her OTTB, Dorado.

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