EHV-1 (Neurological) Instance in Manitoba

Statement from Elder's Equine Clinic

(as posted on facebook)

Equine Herpes Virus In Manitoba

We have received a number for request for information on the current state of an outbreak of EHV-1 neurological form in Manitoba. Although we are not directly dealing with the cases, we are providing support and information. Here is an update on the situation as it currently exists. The horses are quarantined on a farm where the initial cases have been identified in the Western part of the Province. The quarantine is good and is being held under the care of a veterinarian. We are assisting as needed given our experience with EHV1 and quarantine protocols from previous years. There are positive EHV-1 neurological form horses, however, the quarantine has isolated those horses and biosecurity protocols are in place. We will release some information on the condition and general biosecurity protocols that everyone can put in place shortly. The overview is: monitor your horses for fever (anything over 38.5C or 101.5 F) then isolate that horse and have a EHV-1 nasal test performed to rule in or out the presence of the virus in that horse, vaccinate all horses with a competent EHV vaccine - we recommend Prodigy, Pneumobort or Calvenza (all AAEP approved for vaccination in the face of outbreak), limit movement of horses between herds - this is a general biosecurity protocol - at this point there is nothing to suggest that horses traveling to and from fair grounds would be any more at risk and they normally would be, however, everyone needs to make a decision for themselves about the risks. Note this virus is present naturally in a large population of horses and the neurotropic (neurological) form is a aberrant presentation but can be carried by asymptomatic horses normally. Your horse's own immune system response can dictate whether they will be susceptible or not. Vaccination (although not fully protective from neurological form) can significantly reduce the risk of infection and severity of infection. This virus is susceptible to common cleaning agents - alcohol hand washes, detergents, bleach. Maintaining clean environments and not circulating common buckets, pail between horses will go a long way to help prevent the spread of disease in general and particularly with this virus. The virus is a respiratory spread virus, so near contact with the virus is usually necessary to cause infection, having said that there have been some reports of the virus being spread via people so those that are in contact with an infected horse are advised/recommended to maintain limited contact with healthy horses during the outbreak progression, have change of clothes and boots before exiting the infected areas, use of boot baths with bleach or peroxides and alcohol hand cleaning stations in the quarantine areas are excellent protocols to maintain.

More to follow as available. Visit our website for more detailed information on the disease, diagnosis, treatment, prevention, vaccination and biosecurity!

Elders Equine
Experience. Professional. Care

We are resurrecting our EHV1 webpage on the website:

Those concerned can follow the protocols we lay out:

  1. Take the temperature of all horses on your property daily. Any horse that has an increased temperature (fever) above 38.5 C or 101 F should be isolated from the rest of the horses such that they are not in direct air contact with the other horses and a veterinarian should be called to assess the cause of the fever, including nasal swab for PCR identification of EHV-1 and monitoring of clinical signs. The results can typically be turned around in about 24 hours by the referring veterinary laboratories which are commonly used. Horses that are negative to the PCR can be released from isolation and treated for the fever/other symptoms. Horses that are positive will remain isolated and monitored for signs of neurological EHV-1 – note not all positive horses will develop clinical disease or neurological symptoms!
  2. Vaccinate at risk horses (traveling horses, barns with high horse turn over, frequent horse movement, horses in competition) with a specific EHV-1 vaccine such as Prodigy, Pneumobort K or Calvenza (all recommended by the AAEP panel on EHV-1). Although the vaccine cannot report to be 100% protective of the neurological form of EHV-1, it is reported to decrease the degree of viral shedding from carrier horses, decrease the risk of infection and possibly decrease the severity of infection.
  3. Biosecurity protocols should be in place at your stables to isolate new arrival horses for a period of up to 2 weeks prior to introducing them into the general horse population on the farm. Daily temperature reading should be recorded to monitor for signs of fever during this time. Limit mixing of new or young horses. Limit sharing of pails, buckets, halters, leads, feed tubes or other objects between horses to avoid cross contamination and spread of disease in general (EHV, Influenza, strangles etc..). Use a bleach, peroxide, alcohol or detergent disinfectant to clean stalls between cleanings and during prolonged stays in the stall.
  4. Prepare an isolation and biosecurity plan at your stable before you need to have it! Find a place on the farm that can be used for isolation, if needed and prepare foot bath supplies and stock an gel alcohol dispenser and secondary coveralls or clothing in the event that these items may be needed. Discuss with your veterinarian any other concerns regarding your biosecurity preparedness.


Statement from Royal Manitoba Winter Fair

The Provincial Exhibition of Manitoba has been advised that there is a reported case of “Neuro Form” EHV-1 at a farm in Manitoba. The farm has been placed under quarantine which is being monitored by a veterinarian. We are monitoring the situation and are in consultation with our show veterinarian, other veterinarians and Manitoba Horse Council regarding risk management, vaccinations and boosters. We advise consulting your own veterinarian for advice on risk and vaccinations. Provincial Exhibition has a solid biosecurity plan in place; this document will be included in your exhibitor packages and attached to this email. We are working with the Keystone Centre Staff to ensure that all bio security protocols are being followed, stalls have been disinfected and we have a schedule for regular cleaning and disinfecting all wash racks and water hoses. We are doing what we can to mitigate the risk and along with your good horse keeping practices, we are confident that this situation can be managed. Thank you for your patience and support while this situation unfolds. We will see you at the fair! If you have further questions or inquiries please direct them to Ron Kristjansson General Manager [email protected]


Statement from Virden Animal Hospital

(as posted on facebook)

For all horse owners:
We are following an outbreak of Neurologic Equine Herpes Virus-1 (Neurologic EHV-1 or neurologic rhino) which continues to be well managed under quarantine at a single location in our area. Although we are not directly involved with the cases, we are committed to keeping all horse owners in the area informed on the risks involved and preventative measures which can be taken.

It should be mentioned that there have been multiple outbreaks of this disease in multiple parts of the country over the past 40 years. Neurologic EHV-1 is not a new disease but should be taken very seriously due to its potentially deadly and contagious nature.

The most effective protective measures are related to biosecurity: decrease the traffic of horses going to events in the immediate area, use caution with any horses coming onto your property until the quarantine has ended, use all of the usual biosecurity measures to protect your horses such as cleaning and disinfecting tack and water buckets before use, do not share equipment. Wash your hands frequently and avoid handling other horses intermittently with your own. Change clothes and boots when going from any other horses to your own herd.

Re-vaccination of previously immunized but non-exposed horses is thought to provide the most benefit in an outbreak situation. Although the vaccines have shown poor efficacy against Neurologic EHV-1 they are still considered beneficial in providing some cross-protection against this disease. We currently recommend Prodigy at the Virden Animal Hospital. DO NOT rely on vaccination alone for protection of your horses. Remember to consider the recommended biosecurity measures.

Please feel free to contact us with any additional questions. We want to ensure our clients that there have been no cases of this disease at our clinic and we will continue to ensure that our facility remains disease-free as we serve our clients this spring. We will also continue to follow this situation with updates to keep our clients informed of any changes that may occur. Thank You


Statement from CK Mobile Equine Services (Dr. Cindy Kasper)

(as posted on facebook)

EHV 1 - neurological form

As I'm sure most of you are well aware via social media there has been a confirmed case of EHV 1 the neurological form in the virden area.
The farm has been quarantined and proper biosecurity measures are in place.
It is imperative at this to take proper precautions in order to keep everyone safe.
At this time if your horse has not been vaccinated with calvenza, prodigy, or pneumobort within the last 2 months it is highly suggested you do so.
If you have any concerns please do not hesitate to contact us!


See The Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC) for more info: 

EDCC works to protect horses and the horse industry from the threat of infectious diseases in North America. The communication system is designed to seek and report real time information about disease outbreaks similar to how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) alerts the human population about diseases in people.

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Executive Director, Diane David
Phone: (204) 925-5719
Email: [email protected]

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Phone: (204) 925-5718
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