Watch out for horse illness

TWEED horse owners have been warned about a neurological illness affecting horses in NSW.

NSW chief veterinary officer Ian Roth said he had received reports of horses displaying unusual neurological signs such as lack of co-ordination, increased responsiveness to touch and sound, facial paralysis and weakness in the hindquarters.

“This follows initial onset of clinical signs consistent with mild colic and depression,” Mr Roth said.

“Most cases to date have gradually recovered.”

Mr Roth said there was no suggestion Hendra virus was involved in this syndrome.

“All NSW cases have been tested for Hendra virus and all have returned negative results,” Mr Roth said.

“Registered products are available to reduce the exposure of horses to insect bites and should help protect horses from being infected with an arbovirus by biting insects.”

Mr Roth said horse owners should not be unduly alarmed.

The horse is usually not a source of new infection for people or other horses.

Owners who notice horses displaying unusual signs should contact their private veterinarian.



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