Texas Horse Dies of Rabies, Possible Human Exposure

Public health officials in Texas are alerting anyone who may have come in contact with a certain horse at the Scurry County Rodeo, held in mid-July in Snyder, that they might have been exposed to rabies.

More than 250 contestants from Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas participated in the rodeo.

The horse was at the rodeo July 16-18. It became ill July 28, died July 30, and tested positive for rabies on Aug. 5. The horse was not in any rodeo ceremonies or events and was in a stall the entire time. Officials say it is highly unlikely, but possible, that the horse was capable of transmitting the rabies virus while at the rodeo arena.

The 6-year-old sorrel quarter horse mare was 14hh, with white rear stockings and a white star on her forehead. The horse was in the fourth stall from the south end of a row of stalls on the west side of the arena grounds in a parking area reserved for contestants. The adjoining stalls were empty.

The arena is on Gary Brewer Road in Snyder.

Health officials say transmission could have occurred if the horse bit anyone or if saliva from the horse got in an open wound or cut or in the eyes or nose of a person.

See a diagram of the rodeo arena. If you might have been in contact with this horse, contact a doctor or call the Texas Department of State Health Services at 512/458-7255 to determine if you need to receive treatment to prevent rabies.

Disclaimer: Seek the advice of a qualified veterinarian before proceeding with any diagnosis, treatment, or therapy.