Springtime has finally arrived, which means it is vaccination time for our four legged equine friends. It is important that all horses be vaccinated. Although your horse may never even leave your property, many equine diseases are transmitted via insects or other vectors. Because of this, it is pertinent that you ensure protection via vaccinations. We recommend giving equine vaccinations between Mid-April and Mid-May to allow once-annual vaccinating while still providing protection through late September and October mosquito season.
We recommend the five core vaccines for all horses in the spring. This includes the following:
* Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis
* Western Equine Encephalomyelitis
* West Nile Virus
West Nile Virus is transmitted to horses via mosquitoes and other blood sucking insects. The fatality rate for horses infected and showing clinical signs is 33%. For those that survive, many will show life long side effects from the virus.
While rabies is an infrequently encountered neurologic disease of horses, the disease is invariably fatal and has considerable public health significance. The disease is on-the-rise in bat and skunk populations around our region, and equine cases have been identified in Montana.
Competition horses and those that travel frequently are at high risk of exposure, it is recommended that they also be vaccinated for these additional diseases:
* Equine Influenza
* Equine Herpes Virus (rhinopneumonitis)
* Strep equi (aka "Strangles").
All of these diseases readily transmissible via aerosol from horse to horse, and outbreaks can happen at competitions, shows, and events on the road.
At Montana Equine, we carefully tailor our vaccine recommendations to the risks (or lack of risks!) unique to your horses' situation. We administer vaccines to many horses, but depending on your own situation and your horses' needs, we can often dispense vaccines directly for our clients to administer themselves at a reduced cost.
Montana Equine is available for all of your vaccination needs. Please call us or you local veterinarian to answer any questions or concerns you may have as well. You can reach us via email or telephone at 406-285-0123.