Additional Positive WNV Horses in Kentucky

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Kentucky Hart County

Two more 2017 horses have been diagnosed with West Nile virus in Kentucky. The first was in Hart County.

 Kentucky State Veterinarian's office reported that two new cases of equine West Nile virus have been diagnosed. The results of were reported today by Murray State University’s Breathitt Veterinary Center.

The first affected horse was an 8-year-old Tennessee Walking Horse gelding that was improving. The gelding was located in Hart County. The gelding began showing clinical signs on August 13. Those signs included being lethargic, muzzle twitching, muscle fasciculation (shoulders and chest), and mild rear limb ataxia. There was no vaccination history.

Kentucky Russell County

The second positive West Nile virus horse in Kentucky was from Russell County.

The second affected horse was a 3-year-old Thoroughbred gelding that also was improving. The gelding was located in Russell County. Clinical signs began August 14. Those signs included muscle fasciculation with mild ataxia that progressively worsened over 24 hours. The gelding was vaccinated in 2015, thought to have been vaccinated in 2016, and had receive a single vaccination in the spring of 2017.

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s Equine West Nile Page is being updated to reflect these additional two equine West Nile virus cases diagnosed in 2017.

Kentucky West Nile Virus 2001-2016 Cumulative Cases

728 Confirmed Equine West Nile Cases
96% (699) Not Adequately Vaccinated*
30% (219) Case Mortality Rate**

*Not-vaccinated during 12mo period preceding onset or received only an initial vaccination (no booster)
**Confirmed by Case Definition

This information was provided by E.S. Rusty Ford, Equine Programs Manager, Kentucky State Veterinarian's office.