FL Horse Owners Urged to Vaccinate Animals

Randall Weiseman Equine, Florida, General, Livestock

TALLAHASSEE — With the arrival of spring and warmer weather, Florida
Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles H. Bronson today
reminded horse owners to get their animals vaccinated for mosquito borne

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The two principal equine diseases associated with mosquitoes are Eastern
Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV), and the majority of
cases of each can be prevented with proper vaccinations, according to animal
health officials.

“The key is to make sure that a horse has been vaccinated against these
mosquito-borne diseases and to check with your veterinarian to determine
whether an animal’s booster shots are up to date,” Bronson said.

So far this year, Florida has no equine cases of EEE or WNV, but that can
change quickly as mosquito populations increase significantly with the
warmer weather and can explode in areas with heavy rains and standing water.

Humans, too, need to minimize their contact with mosquitoes as mosquitoes
remain the largest carrier of diseases that afflict people.

Toward that end, Bronson is recommending that Floridians:

— Remove standing water from their property by emptying out stagnant water
from kiddie pools, old tires, birdbaths and any other receptacle that holds

— Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outside around dusk and
dawn, when mosquitoes are most active.

— Use a good mosquito repellent.