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First Wisconsin Case of EIA Confirmed Since 2004
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 08/15/2019

A horse and a mule on the same property in Taylor County have tested positive for equine infectious anemia. According to the state's agriculture department, this is the first such case of the virus found in Wisconsin in almost 15 years.

State Equine Program Veterinarian Dr. Julie McGwin says there is no treatment for EIA, so it can only be prevented by have the infected animals euthanized.

"EIA is a devastating disease for horses and their owners. Horses that are not euthanized must be isolated from other horses, which is not usually feasible due to their herd nature, and the lifelong quarantine creates animal welfare issues for the infected horse," said Dr. McGwin. "Horses that survive the initial infection become carriers of the disease and are infectious for life. It's important for horse owners to work with their veterinarian to have regular testing done for this disease as an infected horse can appear healthy."

EIA is an infectious and potentially fatal viral infection that affects only equine species, such as horses, ponies, zebras, mules and donkeys. Symptoms can vary and may include fever and uncontrollable bleeding that can progress to weakness, weight loss, depression, and in some cases death.

The virus can also be transmitted between horses through re-used needles and syringes, blood transfusions, and other contaminated equipment.

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