Barn Quarantine Lifted at Prairie Meadows

A barn quarantine at Prairie Meadows was lifted Monday after tests showed that a horse suspected of having the equine herpes virus did not have the disease.

 "The good news is the quarantine is lifted and horses are free to come and go," said Keith Soring, a state veterinarian at Prairie Meadows. "Everything is back to normal."

Soring said that it still hasn't been determined what struck Storm Wrangler, who had muscle cramps on June 3, then had a temperature and was listless the next two days before being taken to the veterinary clinic at Iowa State. Soring said that encephalitis, which is carried by mosquitos, is one possibility.

Prairie Meadows barred horses from entering or leaving its barn area on June 6 when Storm Wrangler was considered an equine herpes risk. In addition, barn D-4, where the horse was stabled, was quarantined.  No horses from D-4 have been able to race in a week, and they were unable to train until Saturday morning, when a special time at the training track was set aside for them.

The shipping restrictions were relaxed last week when an initial test for herpes was negative. When Monday's confirmation test showed there was no active infection, the remaining restrictions were removed.