In light of recent infectious disease outbreaks, USEA is asking riders and organizers to take a pro-active approach to prevent the introduction of disease by implementing various biosecurity measures. We are hopeful that everyone in the impacted areas will kindly participate.
The best protection starts with you, the following are some recommended biosecurity measures to help keep all horses safe.
Horses and Equipment: All horses should be treated as individuals wherever possible.
- Limit direct contact with your horse to only essential people.
- Horse-specific equipment (buckets, halters, etc) should be clearly labeled with the horses name and used only by that horse.
- DO NOT SHARE-water/feed buckets, halters, lead shanks, tack between horses.
SHARED EQUIPMENT should be scrubbed, cleaned with detergent and rinsed-TWICE.
- DO NOT SUBMERGE COMMUNAL HOSES when filling buckets, keep nozzle above water level.
- DO NOT USE THE SAME WHEELBARROW for both feed and waste removal.
Daily Horse Monitoring:
- Temperature: Fever is a common early warning sign of an infectious disease.
- Monitor rectal temperature 2 times per day (early AM and Late PM) for 2 weeks.
- Individual horse record sheets are available to be posted on individual stall doors, if requested.
- Riders should bring thermometers with them. Usually available at dollar store and pharmacies if needed.
- Clinical Signs: Onset of fever, ocular/nasal discharge, loss of appetite, frequent coughing, lethargy.
- Reporting: If any horse demonstrates elevated temperature or clinical signs, please notify Show Office/Veterinary Team immediately. Please keep the horse in his own stall for further assessment.
Turnout Paddock and Grazing:
- DO NOT MIX HORSES BETWEEN BARNS. Use your judgment when sharing common grazing areas. You don’t know what horse grazed there last.
- Sanitization: Hand washer should be available at each barn for use before and after attending an individual horse.
- Arrival on Grounds: Organizers may ask you to present a recent health certificate, in addition some competitions may wish to retake horse temperatures prior to entering stabling. Please check with the competition website/office for current requirements.
- Bit Checking: Bits may be checked at the conclusion of the dressage test prior to leaving the area. Riders may bring a halter to the bit check area and remove the bridle in the presence of the bit steward for inspection.
Biosecurity is a collective effort, and we appreciate your participation in this effort.
Thank you to Spruce Meadows Veterinary Services and Dr. Emily Sandler for putting this information together.
Equine Herpesvirus Brochure (PDF)