According to the Equine Disease Communication Center and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, a new case of Eastern Equine Encephalitis was confirmed in Levy County, Fla., on Oct. 13. However, no quarantine has been issued.

Only the animals under quarantine have additional travel restrictions. The horse under quarantine is not allowed to leave the premises.

One Thoroughbred yearling filly at a training center in Levy County was confirmed with EEE on Oct. 8 after showing clinical signs of elevated temperature, muscle twitching, incoordination, weakness in hind limbs, inability to stand and listless. The undervaccinated horse has been euthanized.

This is the 12th confirmed case of EEE in Florida in 2023.

According to the Equine Disease Communication Center, eastern equine encephalitis is a vector borne disease. This virus is transmitted by mosquitoes or other biting insects. Birds act as reservoirs for the virus; mosquitoes and other biting insects then carry the pathogen from infected birds and transmit it to horses when they bite. A horse affected with EEE is not contagious and poses no risk to other horses, humans or birds.

The disease is severe with a mortality rate of 75% – 95% and the onset of neurologic disease is frequently sudden and progressive.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact your veterinarian or click here.

Return to Oct. 17 issue of Wire to Wire