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Equine diseases: what you should know now

By Julie Atwood

It’s officially spring, we’re on Daylight Savings Time, and we’re easing back into social life. During the last 2 years, our community’s awareness level of biosafety has increased exponentially, and permeated just about every aspect of daily life.

While we’ve been focused on human illness, it’s important for animal owners to be equally aware of the speed with which infectious diseases can spread among our equines, pets and poultry.

When planning for a trip (or an emergency evacuation), it’s vital to be aware of disease outbreaks, and county, regional and state animal health safety restrictions.

Beware the Ides of March!

Currently, several dangerous, highly contagious equine diseases have spurred quarantines, event and travel restrictions.

Whether you’re trail riding, camping, or attending equestrian competitions, understanding how these infections spread, and staying abreast of restrictions, is critically important.

These outbreaks are a reminder that animal vaccinations are essential. As we gear up for what could be a long fire season, make sure your companion animals are fully vaccinated for everything recommended by your vet. Be sure to factor in vacation plans!

And—if your Pet Evacuation Plan includes a boarding facility, your dog (or, possibly, cat) may require additional vaccinations.

Keeping everyone healthy, including the animals, is a key objective of planning for emergencies and disasters.

Staying informed is a big part of personal and community preparedness. For more information about equie diseases, visit https://