Equine WNV Reported in California, Virginia and Iowa

Confirmed cases of West Nile virus (WNV) were reported in horses from Virginia, Iowa and California.

The following information on equine West Nile virus cases was provided by the Equine Disease Communication Center.

Virginia First WNV in 2018

On August, 15, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) announced confirmation of the state’s first positive case of West Nile virus (WNV) in a horse this year. 

The nine-year-old pony mare from Fauquier County tested positive for WNV at VDACS’ regional animal health laboratory in Warrenton and a USDA lab in Iowa. The horse was not vaccinated for WNV and has recovered. Symptoms included loss of control of bodily movements and partial paralysis in the hind limbs, dazed appearance and lack of ability to stand.

California First WNV in 2018

On August 14, the California Department of Food and Agriculture confirmed the first equine West Nile virus case for 2018. An unvaccinated 4-year-old Quarter Horse mare in Shasta County displaying severe neurologic signs was confirmed positive for West Nile virus. Due to the severity of clinical signs, the mare was euthanized. For more information visit https://www.cdfa.ca.gov/ahfss/animal_health/WNV_Info.html .

Iowa WNV Cases

The Iowa State Veterinarian has confirmed West Nile virus in two horses. On August 1. The first case was an unvaccinated 1-year-old Percheron colt in Mitchell County, which was febrile, recumbent and dog sitting. This horse’s current status is unknown. On August 6, an unvaccinated 3-year-old grade mare in Mahaska County was observed stumbling and became recumbent two days later. This horse’s current status is unknown.

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