Yukon Territory horse tests positive for EIA – The horse

On May 24, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) National Reference Laboratory confirmed positive infectious anemia (EIA) results for a horse in Watson Lake, Yukon. The horse owner had requested the test from a licensed veterinarian to meet the requirements prior to entering a facility.

In accordance with program policy, the CFIA is investigating and has adopted an official quarantine for the animal and its on-site contacts. Additional equines are reported as being at the affected premises.

The quarantine will remain in effect until all disease response protocols are completed, including follow-up testing and the order for euthanasia of confirmed cases. Depending on the policy, tracing activities may require the CFIA to adopt program protocols at other locations.

About EIA

Equine infectious anemia is a viral disease that attacks the immune system in horses. The virus is transmitted through the exchange of bodily fluids from an infected animal to an uninfected animal, often by blood-feeding insects such as horseflies. It can also be transmitted through the use of instruments or needles contaminated with blood.

A Coggins test looks for antibodies in horses’ blood indicating the presence of the EIA virus. Most states in the US require horses to have proof of a negative Coggins test to cross national borders.

Once an animal is infected with EIA, it is infected for life and can be a reservoir for the disease to spread. Not all horses show signs of illness, but those that do may show:

  • Progressive loss of condition;
  • Muscular weakness;
  • Poor endurance;
  • Fever;
  • Depression; and
  • Anemia.

EIA has no vaccine or cure. A horse diagnosed with the disease dies, is euthanized, or must be placed under extremely strict quarantine conditions (at least 200 meters from unaffected equines) for the rest of its life.


About Norman Griggs

Check Also

A famous rooster who thinks he’s a kitten has disappeared from the Funny Farm Rescue

Squiggy, a four-pound rooster who thinks he’s a kitten, is so cute that visitors to …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.