Agricultural authorities in California are seeking six animals to receive follow-up testing in connection with a California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) Animal Health Branch study of equine infectious anemia (EIA) infections in racing Quarter Horses.
EIA is a viral disease that is attacks the horse's immune system. EIA is spread animal-to-animal naturally by biting insects, or by the use of contaminated needles or surgical instruments. All EIA-positive horses are either humanely euthanized or placed under lifelong quarantine.
CDFA spokesman Steve Lyle said that CDFA veterinarians began investigating the infections in July 2012 after EIA was confirmed in a racing Quarter Horse during required California Horse Racing Board entry testing. At that time, the horse's owner acknowledged sharing needles among horses. Subsequent testing of exposed horses on the premises at the time confirmed EIA in a second horse. Another 16 exposed animals tested negative for EIA, Lyle said.
Lyle said that California regulations require the retesting of exposed horses 60 days after initial testing was performed. So far, 10 of the 16 exposed horses have been tested. However, at the time of the retesting, California agricultural authorities were unable to locate the remaining six horses. Lyle said the population of racing Quarter Horses involved in the investigation is considered high-risk due to their potential participation in unsanctioned horse racing.
"We're not looking for horses with EIA," Lyle said. "We're looking for these horses to be retested."
The Quarter Horses sought for testing in connection with the investigation are Fruitstand Freckles, a 3-year-old chestnut filly with no lip tattoo; Jazzy Patriots, a 5-year-old bay mare with lip tattoo 1042Z; Hells Bells Hawk, a 4-year-old mare with lip tattoo 10936; Toby is Hot, a 3-year-old bay filly with lip tattoo 37303, and AShot of Fury, a 2-year-old bay colt with lip tattoo 12157. Investigators are also seeking on Thoroughbred: a 3-year-old filly named The Doll, who has no lip tattoo.
The six horses sought for the investigation were last located in Turlock, Calif., Lye said.
Anyone with information about these animals or their location is asked to contact Katie Flynn, BVMS, MRCVS, at 916/900-5039 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclaimer: Seek the advice of a qualified veterinarian before proceeding with any diagnosis, treatment, or therapy.