The Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus or EEE is a disease transmitted from a mosquito. It causes inflammation in the brain of horses and humans. It is deadly! There has been a lot of commotion about it this year. It has been a big year for the virus. Are you and your horse safe? Find out!

What is the Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus?

It’s an arbovirus, basically meaning that it spreads through a mosquito bite or other arthropod. It can be found in the northeast of the country, especially around the Great Lakes and Gulf Coast. States with high reported cases include Michigan, New York, Massachusetts, and Florida. A dozen others have had cases though.

Symptoms Shown in Horses

It affects the nervous system, so lookout for these signs in your horse.

  • Fever
  • Depression
  • Changes in behavior
  • Impaired vision
  • Muscle twitches
  • Circling
  • Paralysis
  • Convulsions

Contact your veterinarian immediately if you notice these symptoms in your horse.

Prevention of EEE

There is a vaccine available for horses. Furthermore, you should take great measures to reduce the mosquito population to minimize exposure. This can include eliminating standing water by filling ditches, clearing away debris, and managing muddy areas. You can also use an insect repellent on your horse.

What About People?

Yes, people can also get the Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus. Make sure to protect yourself by using a repellent and avoiding outdoor activities when mosquitoes are most active. Be wry if you develop a sudden fever, body aches, headaches, disorientation, seizures, or paralysis.

Learn more on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Check out: Top 5 Horse Diseases That Can Kill for other diseases you should worry about!