This sounds really stupid but have really ever heard of a horse testing positive on a coggins test??? I haven't around here and what happens to the horse if it does test positive? Do they treat it? Kill it?? Please offer me insite.
Coggins tests for EIA, also known as swamp fever. I think more than half of the horses who get it survive but they always remain a carrier. So they remain able to infect other horses for the rest of their lives. It's highly contagious. Depending on where you are you may be required to keep the horse really far (think in terms of a few miles) away from other horses.
I believe standard practice is to put the horse down though.
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Positive Coggins results are put down, usually by your Vet, but the state will send someone out, too. The test is performed on blood shipped to your state's capitol, and they record the results. It is an anemia and is related to the Aids virus, therefore, it is very contagious. The racehorse industry is largely responsible for originally spreading the disease. They must test--I believe--every three months. In IL, where I live, you are required to test every year, but only if you travel out of state. Some places require 6 months current negative results.
Positive test occur on horses that LOOK sick. It should come as no surprise to the owner. Chances are that if you horse is pretty healthy, he probably doesn't have Equine Infectious Anemia.
I am beginning to think this is nothing more than a money maker for vets and government bureaucracies. Seems horses that do test positive rarely are showing any symptoms. I know lots and lots of horses running around that have never been tested. Youd think if it was an issue more sick horses would be showing up. Of course they could be getting treated but not tested. Of course I guess it could be like smallpox and the large scale testing an euthanizing has pretty much eradicated the disease.
Under federal law if your horse tests positive you have three options, donate to science, ( the one place that accepts them is full) place in an approved quarrantine for life, or kill them. Most are killed. Seems there are a few positives every year. Usually makes headlines in the various horse magazines.
I remember there being a few outbreaks of Coggins in the Vancouver/Vancouver Island, British Columbia area.. lots of stables were quarentined. Although, I am not sure of the aftermath if any horses were put down or not. This was a few years ago too... I haven't heard anything about Coggins since then.
Check this out, looks like the positive results have really declined, from 534 back in 2001 to only 82 in 2011.
USDA - APHIS - Animal Health Monitoring & Surveillance - West Nile Virus Surveillance
This was in 2005 but of significance to me, is Meadville is less than an hour from I am originally from. And my good friend was at this particular auction looking for a horse:shock: Thankfully, she came home with nothing but tack that day.
The Horse | EIA-Positive Horse Auctioned Off in Two States | TheHorse.com
The reason for the decline in cases of EIA over the years is because now there's testing for it which identifies infected animals, and they're destroyed before they can infect more horses.
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