Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler sits down each week with Southern Farm Network’s Rhonda Garrison to discuss “Today’s Topic.”
The first documented case of equine infectious anemia in North Carolina since 2005 was confirmed recently in a 14-year-old female mule from Johnston County.
The case was discovered through a routine blood test by the NCDA&CS Rollins Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory in Raleigh and confirmed by the USDA.
The Johnston County facility is under a quarantine that restricts movement of equine until our department completes more tests.
Because the disease is not curable, the mule was euthanized. The remaining equine animals at the facility were tested, and EIA was not detected in them. They will be retested in 60 days, and we are monitoring neighboring facilities for the disease.
EIA is most commonly spread between horses, mules and donkeys that are in close proximity to biting flies and ticks. Clinical signs of the disease include fever, weakness, weight loss, anemia and edema, and death. But affected equine don’t always show symptoms.
The disease does not affect people.
There are typically just a few cases of EIA in the United States every year. EIA is controlled in the U.S. by regular testing before traveling across state lines or before exhibitions. The test for EIA is commonly called a Coggins test.
There is no approved vaccine for EIA in the U.S. But there are several steps equine owners can take to prevent the disease:
Equine owners who have concerns about their animal’s health should contact their local veterinarian.
Click on the link below to listen to Commissioner Troxler and Rhonda talk about EIA.
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