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What is Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1)? Outbreak in Europe

Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1):

There has been an outbreak of Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1) among horses in Europe.

  • So far seven countries have confirmed EHV-1 cases: Spain, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden and Qatar.

About Equine Herpes Virus (EHV):

  • Equine Herpes Virus is a common DNA virus that occurs in horse populations worldwide.
  • EHV is a family of viruses that are named by numbers such as EHV 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.
  • There are more viruses in this family, but EHV 1, 3, and 4 pose the most serious health risks for domestic horses.
  • EHV1 can cause manifestations of disease in horses, including respiratory disease, abortion and neonatal death.
  • This strain can also cause neurological problems, leading to paralysis and in some cases, death.
  • Horses that contract this virus can develop a lack of coordination, weakness, loss of appetite, and are unable to stand.
  • It is contagious and spread by direct horse-to-horse contact via the respiratory tract through nasal secretions.
  • This virus can also be spread indirectly through contact with physical objects that are contaminated with the virus.
  • Equine Herpesvirus Myeloencephalopathy (EHM) is another name for the neurologic disease associated with Equine Herpes Virus (EHV) infections.