West Nile Strikes KY Horses

By  | 

A five-year-old gelding has died in nearby Greenup County, Kentucky, after contracting the West Nile virus. It's the third equine death linked to the disease in Kentucky this year.

State officials say the draft horse started showing symptoms of the mosquito-borne virus on July 26th and was euthanized three days later.

A yearling thoroughbred colt died in Fayette County, Kentucky, on June 27, and a five-year-old gelded Tennessee Walking Horse died in Nelson County, Kentucky July Tenth. A 13-year-old gelding in Whitley County, Kentucky, also a Tennessee Walking Horse, was diagnosed with the disease on July 18, but recovered.

Last fall, a two-year-old colt was diagnosed with West Nile at Churchill Downs, the site of the Kentucky Derby. The colt was euthanized in Lexington, Kentucky. In all, six horses died from the disease in Kentucky last year.

Officials say horse vaccinations against the disease are very effective.

West Nile has been detected in West Virginia, but so far there are no reports of horse or human infections.