The bacterial disease, Potomac Horse Fever, which normally doesn’t show up until July or August, was diagnosed in a horse in Indiana in mid-June, which could mean more cases of the disease this summer.
Janice Kritchevsky, professor of large animal internal medicine at Purdue says horses need to be diagnosed quickly, adding that early treatment increases the likelihood of survival.
Insects such as freshwater snails, caddisflies, mayflies and dragonflies are common carries of the bacterium which causes the disease. When they die and litter the ground or fall into feed or water, horses contract the disease by eating the contaminated hay, grain or pasture, or by drinking contaminated water.
Symptoms include, colitis, dehydration and diarrhea, left untreated can, it can lead to shock, permanent lameness or death.
Potomac Horse Fever is not contagious.
The veterinarians in Purdue’s Large Animal Internal Medicine Department are specialists in Potomac Horse Fever and other equine infectious diseases. Horse owners or veterinarians who have questions can call the hospital at 765-494-8548.
© Copyright 2012 Brownfield, All rights Reserved. Written For: Brownfield