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Common Equine Viruses (EHV-1)

Equine Herpes Virus (EHV) is found in horses all around the world. Many horses have been infected without presenting any major side effects, while some infected horses have died from neurological side effects. To avoid the health risks posed by this virus, you must know how to prevent infection and how to control it when a horse gets infected. Below are some important details about EHV.

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What Are Common Equine Viruses and Infections?

Equine Herpes Virus is a family of DNA viruses that are identified with numbers like EHV-1, EHV-3 and EHV-4:

  • EHV-1: This virus can result in different equine conditions such as respiratory disease, neonatal death, abortion and neurological disorders.
  • EHV-3: This virus causes a disease known as coital exanthema, which affects the genitals and can hinder fertility.
  • >EHV-4: An upper respiratory tract disorder develops from this virus in foals. It’s also linked to abortion in mares.

What Are the Symptoms of EHV-1?

After a horse has been infected with EHV-1, it’ll present the following signs and symptoms:

  • A two-phase fever that could last two to seven days
  • Respiratory infection with mucus discharge from the nose and eyes
  • Enlargement of lymph nodes close to the jaw

The neurologic form produces fever and little or no respiratory signs. It progresses very fast with lethargy, weakness of hind limbs, nasal discharge, lack of coordination, dribbling urine and lying down.

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What Causes the EHV-1 Virus?

EHV-1 spreads by horse-to-horse contact through nasal secretions from the respiratory tract. It’s vital to note that the virus also spreads when horses encounter contaminated physical objects, including:

  • Feeders and water buckets
  • Grooming equipment such as wipe rags
  • Transportation trailers
  • Human hands and clothes

Spread can also occur through air contaminated with the contagious virus. This airborne virus can spread and infect horses in the same environment.

EHV-1 can survive for a minimum of one week. Under certain conditions, it may survive outside a horse’s body for up to four weeks.

How Can You Prevent Infection by the EHV-1 Virus?

The most effective means of curbing the spread of this virus is to maintain proper hygiene and clean the stall and all physical objects with disinfectants. Here are a few practical steps you can take to this end:

  • Wash all surfaces with soap and water before applying disinfectants. Cleaning surfaces first will remove any organic matter and enhance the effect of the disinfectant.
  • Apply disinfectants and detergents to all surfaces in the environment.
  • Use a hand sanitizer to wash your hands properly before moving from one horse to another.
  • Boost the immunity of your horses with Zesterra®.

Zesterra® is a powerful equine supplement formulated to help your horses overcome the stress that breaks down the immune system. It promotes the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut, making it very difficult for horses to get infected by the EHV.

Find Out More About Zesterra®’s Immune Boosting Properties

To get more information about how Zesterra® can help diminish the occurrence of Equine Herpes Virus infections, contact us today. Visit the Zesterra® product page for full details about this all-natural supplement.

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