Test results on all 17 horses at a Kent County farm affected by the neurologic form of equine herpesvirus are negative for the virus and the Maryland Department of Agriculture expects to lift the hold order on the farm on March 4 after a final veterinary inspection is conducted.
When the hold order is lifted, the farm and the horses can resume normal activities. The hold order has been in place since Jan. 26 when the first of two horses were euthanized on the farm due to the virus. The last clinical signs of EHV-1 on the farm were on Feb. 4.
On March 3, MDA lifted the hold order on Laurel Barn 9 allowing the 34 horses that tested negative for EHV-1 to resume normal activities. Two additional horses in the barn are not showing any signs of the virus but did not clear the testing process and have been relocated to an isolated barn on the grandstand side of the Bowie Training Center until they test negative. The two were re-tested at Laurel Park March 3 before being shipped to Bowie. The remaining horses in Barn 9 will resume normal activities and are eligible to race March 8. A filly stabled in the barn was euthanized Jan. 26, with test results confirming neurologic EHV-1.
At Pimlico Race Course, four of the six horses in the detention barn tested negative for the virus in both blood samples and nasal swab tests and have been moved back to their original barns to resume normal activities. The two which did not clear are not showing symptoms of EHV-1 but remain under a hold order and are prohibited from mixing with the general horse population until they test negative.