New Horse Isolation Ward Dedicated at Tufts Vet School

A new large animal isolation ward designed to better manage the care of horses with infectious diseases will be dedicated today at Tufts' Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. The new facility represents a strong collaboration between the basic- and clinical-science divisions of New England's only veterinary school.

The 3,300 square-foot facility triples the capacity for clinicians at the Cummings School's Hospital for Large Animals to manage infectious diseases, ranging from salmonellosis, strangles, and equine herpesvirus-1 in horses to cryptosporidiosis in calves, goats, and alpacas.

Currently, the Hospital for Large Animals' isolation facility consists of two stalls. With more than 12% of the hospital’s incoming patients suspected of having infectious diseases, potentially contagious animals would be denied admission if both stalls were full. Each of the six stalls in the new isolation facility will be self-contained with separate ventilation units, and two feature hoists to aid animals with neurologic signs.

The $3.7-million facility was designed by Gregory J. O'Connor and Associates of Worcester, Mass., and built by C.E. Floyd Company of Bedford, Mass., to match the brick and copper roof of the Cummings School’s Foster Hospital for Small Animals and Hospital for Large Animals. The new facility was funded by a gift from The Manton Foundation.

"The Cummings School's new isolation ward extends our ability to serve horses and other large animals and their owners in New England," said Deborah T. Kochevar, DVM, PhD, dean of the Cummings School. "This facility increases resources for our clinicians and provides new opportunities to advance our understanding of spontaneous infectious disease through collaboration with our well-known Division of Infectious Diseases."

The Hospital for Large Animals at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine treated more than 1,800 horses, camelids, and livestock in its 2009 fiscal year. As the only equine teaching hospital in New England, the hospital offers consultation, referral, emergency veterinary services, 24-hour care for animals, and the region’s most advanced imaging capabilities for large and small animals.

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