West Nile Virus: Protect your Horse
West Nile Virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne viral infection that affects horses and humans. It is transmitted through the bite of infected mosquitos. Mosquitos lay their eggs in standing water, which develops into thousands of mosquitos in 7-10 days. Take the following steps to minimize the risk of disease in your horses: Vaccinate Several licensed products are available. Contact your veterinarian to ensure the vaccination status of your horse is current.
• Dusk to Dawn – If possible, stable horses during active mosquito feeding times.
• Screens and Doors – Close stable doors and use screens to keep mosquitos from entering your barn.
• Fans – Utilize fans to keep air circulating. This keeps mosquitos out of the area.
• Flysheets – Use flysheets and fly masks as protection for your horse.
• Mosquito Repellents – Use horse safe insect repellents with Permethrin.
Eliminate Mosquito Larvae
• Mosquito Fish – These fish eat mosquito larvae that have just hatched from eggs. Contact your local Mosquito Vector Agency.
• Mosquito Dunks – Doughnut shaped blocks that dissolve slowly in water and contain a pesticide that kills mosquito larvae.
It is harmless to animals and fish. These can be found at local garden/ hardware stores.
Eliminate Standing Water
• Water Troughs – Change water twice a week.
• Wheelbarrows – Dump and leave in an upright position to prevent water collection.
• Drains – Keep outdoor drains free flowing to eliminate standing water.
• Irrigation – Manage irrigation systems to minimize puddles and standing water.
• Leaks – Fix leaky hoses and faucets that may create puddles.
• Rain Gutters – Keep rain gutters clear of leaves and debris that can cause water pooling.
• Trash – Dispose of items that can hold water, including cans, cups and bags. Make sure trashcans are tightly covered to prevent rainwater from collecting.
• Ponds – Stagnant water breeds mosquitos. Aerate ornamental pools, stock with mosquito fish, and/or use mosquito dunks.
Animal Health and Food Safety
Services Animal Health Branch Headquarters - (916) 900-5002
USDA-APHIS- (916) 854-3950 or (877) 741-3690
For more information, please go to the following:
West Nile Virus Information Page https://www.cdfa.ca.gov/ahfss/Animal_Health/WNV _Info.html