We dedicated this article to the “10 most common equine diseases” in honor of our equine vets and equine enthusiasts.
You can read about the most common diseases that affect horses and the indications of whether an effective vaccine exists.

10 most common equine diseases

10 Most Common Equine Diseases infographic I Love Veterinary

 

EQUINE INFLUENZA ( “flu” )

  • clinical signs of equine influenza: fever, coughing, nasal discharge, and a loss of appetite.
  • this is a highly contagious equine disease
  • vaccine available. When vaccinating horses use the most recent influenza strain available.

RHINOPNEUMONITIS/EQUINE HERPESVIRUS (EHV)

  •  clinical signs of equine herpesvirus: respiratory infections, paralysis, abortion, occasionally death in young horses.
  •  this is a highly contagious equine disease
  •  vaccine available. EHV-4 and EHV-1 strain vaccine for all horses. For abortion protection in the pregnant mare, you should vaccinate at the 3rd, 5th, 7th and 9th month of the gestation for EVH-1 with “Pneumobort-K”.

EQUINE ENCEPHALOMYELITIS (“Sleeping sickness”)

  •  clinical signs of equine encephalomyelitis: loss of appetite, excites and compulsive behavior, walking blindly into objects.
  •  this is a vector disease transmitted by mosquitos. Highly fatal.
  •  vaccine available

EQUINE INFECTIOUS ANEMIA VIRUS (EIA)

  •  clinical signs of equine infectious anemia: fever, depression, decreased appetite, fatigue, reduced stamina, rapid weight loss.
  •  this is a potentially fatal viral disease
  •  no vaccine, treatment or cure available.

WEST NILE VIRUS

  •  clinical signs of West Nile Virus: loss of coordination, depression, heightened sensitivity to external stimuli, stumbling, toe dragging, paralysis and even death in severe cases.
  • mosquito-borne viral disease
  •  vaccine available

STREPTOCOCCUS EQUI (“Strangles”)

  •  clinical signs of equine strangles: fever, discharge, cough, loss of appetite, trouble swallowing, swollen lymph nodes, impaired breathing.
  • this is a contagious bacterial disease
  • vaccine available

TETANUS (“Lockjaw”)

  •  clinical signs of tetanus in horses: muscle cramps, high fever, violent reactions to sudden movement or noise, sometimes death from asphyxiation
  •  bacterial disease (Clostridium tetani)
  •  vaccine available

EQUINE RABIES

  • clinical signs of equine rabies: depression, loss of appetite, low-grade fever, abdominal pain, lameness, increased sensitivity to touch.
  •  rabies is inariably fatal. If you suspect that a horse might have rabies call a veterinarian ASAP.
  •  vaccine available and recommended.

POTOMAC HORSE FEVER

  • clinical signs of Potomac horse fever: characterized fever, lameness, diarrhea, occasionally death.
  • vaccination available and strongly recommended in endemic areas.

EQUINE PROTOZOAL MYELOENCEPHALITIS 

  • clinical signs of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis: asymmetric incoordination, weakness, spasticity, may mimic other neurological conditions.
  •  no effective vaccine available.

 

The Infographic was created by Selina M. Lewis.