Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) officials confirmed equine infectious anemia (EIA) in one horse on a Kleberg County premises on March 16, 2020. This is the first confirmed case of EIA in Texas this year.
The premises has been quarantined and will not be released until TAHC's requirements are met. TAHC staff are working closely with the owner and local veterinarian to monitor potentially exposed horses and implement biosecurity measures.
EIA is an incurable, infectious viral disease spread through blood-to-blood contact, not through close proximity or direct contact. The virus can be transmitted from an infected equine to an uninfected or “clean” equine by biting flies, the use of unsterilized or contaminated medical instruments, or through a blood transfusion. The most common clinical sign of acute EIA is fever, which often precedes the development of other signs. In chronic cases, symptoms such as weight loss, weakness, anemia and swelling of the lower legs, chest and abdomen can occur.
The TAHC would like to remind horse owners that all Texas equine participating in Texas events must have a negative EIA test, performed by a private practitioner, within the past 12 months. Horse owners should keep the EIA test document or "Coggins papers" available when traveling with horses. Contact your private veterinarian for testing.
Any additional Texas EIA cases this year will be posted on the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC) website, www.equinediseasecc.org/alerts/outbreaks.
For more information on EIA please visit www.tahc.texas.gov/news/brochures/TAHCBrochure_EIA.pdf.
The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) was established in 1893 as the Livestock Sanitary Commission and charged with protecting the state’s domestic animals “from all contagious or infectious diseases of a malignant character.” TAHC remains true to this charge while evolving with the times to protect the health and marketability of all Texas livestock and poultry. Learn more about the TAHC visit www.tahc.texas.gov.