Horse owners' swift action stopped disease

A potentially lethal virus was quickly dispatched when horse owners did not travel with their animals.

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It was supposed to be a dangerous summer for horse owners.

In early May, a highly contagious and potentially lethal disease -- equine herpes virus -- was detected in horses that had been at the National Cutting Horse Association in Ogden, Utah. It was feared the horses, now fanned out across the West, would quickly spread the disease.

But action was taken quickly. Horse-related events of all kinds were canceled and horse owners were urged not to travel with their animals.

It worked. This week Dr. Leonard Eldridge, Washington state veterinarian, said he believes sufficient time has passed without further cases. The coast, as they say, is clear.

Amazing. Generally at least a few people don't follow the recommendations and fuel the spread of diseases.

"The prompt actions of horse owners across the state limited the transmission of disease," Eldridge said. "There is a lot of disappointment about canceled events, that's certainly understandable, but it's a small price to pay to keep our animals safe from this potentially deadly virus."

Horse owners acted quickly and wisely. They followed the recommendations and quickly stopped the spread of this disease. Bravo.

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