SWAMP FEVER ARRIVES IN BRITAIN

OWLIE185

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(From Pages 4 and 5 of this weeks Horse and Hounds 3 August 2006).

Swamp fever or Equine Infectious Anaemia (EIA) is mainly found in the U.S.A. has been transmitted to horses in Ireland.

On 15th June 2006 two horses contracted the disease in Co Meath 30 miles from Dublin. Six weeks later 14 more cases have been diagnosed in Ireland. 280 horses are in Isolation and 13 yards have been closed. Some 2,300 horses are believed to have been in contact with the infected horses and are being tested. The outbreak resulted from the importation of infected plasma from Italy which was given to two foals in co Meath Ireland.

Symptoms include haemorrhages, intermittent fever, swelling of the head and legs and anaemia. It causes organ failure and death. Because horses in Britain have never been exposed to it they are highly susceptible to the disease. Horses can recover but may become carriers for life - so they will be put down.

It is higly infectious and is spread via blood mainly by biting insects. It has never reached Britain before.

If more cases are confirmed the cancellation of equestrial events may be necessary.

Visit www.defra.gov.uk and www.beva.org.uk for further information.
 

Super_Kat

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Erm....there hasn't ever been a case of swamp fever in Britain and it isn't here yet, please read things properly before posting that it has!
 

druid

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Just so you know - people here really aren't worried right now. There is no transport restrictions for the general public, no shows/racing cancelled. Really...scaremongering
 

kayleighjessop

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Why say things that are not happening right now, that will really worry people, it really worried me for a moment but then i read other members comments and that calmed me down, but i really think you should be carefull on how you word things!!!
 

ChrissieCollins

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To be fair, the H&H headline said 'Britain' but the south of Ireland is not Britain, it's part of the British isles but not Britain if you see what I mean
 

airedale

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Not strictly UN true -

I have just been to that font of all information - the DEFRA website

25 horses are in quarantine in the UK - some from the first contacts with horses in Ireland and some from a 2nd batch of contacts with horses in Ireland who developed the disease after the first batch.

these horses are now quarantined for 60 days and are being tested for any signs - the statement on the DEFRA website is that some have already passed first blood test as clear and some passed the 2nd one as well.

There is NO suggestion on the DEFRA website of cancelling movements or shows.

As a poultry keeper I have been thru all this with the bird flu panic this spring. DEFRA does prefer to kill things rather than cure them (sad but true - remember foot and mouth) - so if DEFRA are not making any mutterings about 'nasty' consequences then I'd definitely not panic.

For the facts on issues like this the ONLY source of accurate information is the DEFRA website (and an equivalent EU website at europa.eu). Any reports in publications like newspapers or magazines will (or should) take their root source of information from DEFRA.

DEFRA is accurate for the UK as it has the right to 'interpret' any EU legislation to suit this country.

DEFRA is at www.defra.gov.uk and there is a link from the front page on the RHS to Equine Infectious Anaemia, including an FAQ
 

Super_Kat

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[ QUOTE ]
So is it in Britain? I haven't got mine yet as not been home to read it...

[/ QUOTE ]

No Becki, there has only been either 14 or 16 confirmed cases in Ireland and as Druid said, the people over there aren't getting worried abut the swamp fever and there haven't ben any cancelled shows/transport resrtictions put in place yet.

xx
 

Parkranger

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Surely if horses are imported from Ireland everyday then it's something we should all be aware of - don't think there's anyting wrong with raising awareness!
 

airedale

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Totally agree - and horses are still travelling to/from Ireland (e.g. Hickstead).

Just keep a passing eye on the DEFRA website for updates. When the bird flu 'panic' was at it's height I used to check that site every couple of days - and ignored what was 'spinning' in the newspapers.
 

severnmiles

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Ok, I don't understand this bit.....

"Six weeks later, 14 more cases have been diagnosed in Ireland, 280 horses are in isolation and 13 yards have been closed"

"Britain has 24 horses in isolation and is closely monitoring the outbreak of "swamp fever""

So if Britain has 24 horses in isolation then there is a good chance that yes it could be in Britain right now so I think its a bit unfair biting the poster of this thread's head off!

I'm a bit worried as one of our neighbours has imported horses recently and the end is fatal whether they get over it or not as they are still carriers so have to be euthanased.
crazy.gif
 

Fairynuff

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As someone who posted a while back about the outbreak in Ireland (and had my head slightly chewed because of it) I hope you all take this serious. Equine Infectious Aenemia is serious and is easily transmitted via sharp instruments carrying infected blood and biting insects. It isnt always fatal and those that live become carriers hence the need for slaughter.Even if they live they are never as they were and have to be kept in total isolation for the rest of their days = 200 metres from the nearest other equine. Dont be complacent and remember that the equine world has become very, very small. Horses can be flown in, raced and sent back to where they came from the next day (more or less). Its an unforgiving disease and only stringent measures will keep it under control. I have the obligation to have all of mine tested and passports stamped even though theyre retired and go nowhere. Italy cocks it up AGAIN!
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Mairi.
 

Fairynuff

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It is and whats even dafter are the people who think that the geographical position of England Scotland and Wales is IMPORTANT are being stupid! I hope never to see postings on this forum saying that the worst has happened to their horses and ponies. Its not like foot and mouth or anthrax but it does spread and could have serious consequences for all concerned. To much of the "it will never happen to me" syndrome. M.
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airedale

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As I have said below - if you read the DEFRA website - contact horses that have moved from Ireland to this country are now in quarantine and being regularly tested for this disease.

So far some have cleared one blood test and some two. However the 'incubation' period can be as long as 90 days

Cancellation of horse shows is a mere bagatelle.

If this disease is contracted by your horse DEFRA will kill them - end of storey - and you will be able to do NOTHING to stop them - remember F&M.

More realistic will be to be wary at the moment of horses that have come from Ireland and all new arrivals in any stables that could have recently come from Ireland should be given precautionary isolation, as you should do for any new horse on a yard, in case of strangles or other infectious diseases.

A yard near me last year didn't follow this basic rule and allowed a new arrival to mix straight into the yard. One horse then died from strangles......
 

Fairynuff

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All horses leaving from Italy or enrering MUST have a negative COGGINS TEST which will be done before leaving or entering. It has to be done within a certain date prior to shipping but I cant remember when. We are not obliged to slaughter but are obliged to quarentine the horse for the rest of his life (should he survive)! Ive never heard of someone doing this and so far any positive cases have been slaughtered and incinerated.
By law, horses here (where I live) are tested annually but for some reason now every 2 years.
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The local authority vets arent really used to dealing with horses and when they come to take the blood theyre already jittery = jittery horses. They have the VERY bad habit of then selecting the quietest and easiest to draw blood from and use that one to provide blood for all on the yard. I find it incredibly stupid and dangerous and will take blood from any that the vet doesnt want to do.I am so sorry that this horrible disease has reached the BRITISH ISLES and hope that the Italian company pays dearly for their idiocy and down right criminal behavour.It will probably end up like a soap bubble just like the HIV positive blood the Italian companies were producing and selling a few years back- anyone remember De Lorenzo the public health minister?. He now lives in GB , has a whopping pension, works for the private sector /medicine and is responsible for the death or infection of hundreds of innocent people. I think the Italians should stick to producing pasta and clothes. I could rant all evening but wont. Mairi.
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