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Potomac Horse Fever Map – Where Is This Disease Found?

If you’re concerned about your horse being infected with Potomac horse fever, then utilizing a Potomac horse fever map can help you to identify areas that are at a high risk of this serious health condition. Let’s find out everything you need to know about the Potomac horse fever map!

What Is Potomac Horse Fever?

Potomac horse fever (PHF) is a severe infectious disease of horses, caused when horses consume infected parasites and aquatic insects. Cases occur most commonly in horses that graze near to or alongside rivers, lakes, and other water sources, although they can occur anywhere. Horses of any age, breed, or type can be infected by PHF.

PHF is most common in late summer and through the fall when insect populations are at their highest. The initial clinical signs of PHF in horses are quite mild, with the horse just seeming to be lethargic with a reduced appetite. However, other clinical signs quickly develop, including an elevated respiratory rate, elevated heart rate, and fever.

If left untreated, horses with PHF can develop some serious and debilitating secondary conditions. Many horses with PHF develop laminitis, thought to be due to the high levels of circulating toxins in the bloodstream. Pregnant mares that contract PHF will commonly abort their foal.

What Is Potomac Horse Fever?

Potomac horse fever (PHF) is a severe infectious disease of horses, caused when horses consume infected parasites and aquatic insects. Cases occur most commonly in horses that graze near to or alongside rivers, lakes, and other water sources, although they can occur anywhere. Horses of any age, breed, or type can be infected by PHF.

PHF is most common in late summer and through the fall when insect populations are at their highest. The initial clinical signs of PHF in horses are quite mild, with the horse just seeming to be lethargic with a reduced appetite. However, other clinical signs quickly develop, including an elevated respiratory rate, elevated heart rate, and fever.

If left untreated, horses with PHF can develop some serious and debilitating secondary conditions. Many horses with PHF develop laminitis, thought to be due to the high levels of circulating toxins in the bloodstream. Pregnant mares that contract PHF will commonly abort their foal.

What Is A Potomac Horse Fever Map?

Potomac horse fever is endemic in specific areas, but is not widespread across the whole country. The potomac horse fever map can be used to identify at risk areas, enabling horse owners to be vigilant for the symptoms of PHF.

Potomac horse fever maps are normally created in response to an outbreak of cases in a particular region or area. Alternatively, country-wide maps can be used to identify regions where this disease is found.

Infection with PHF is confirmed following the submission of two blood samples taken 1-2 weeks apart, with the first being taken as soon as clinical symptoms occur. A positive case of PHF will show a significant increase in the serological response to the causative agent. PCR tests can also be carried out to detect the presence of the causative agent in blood or feces.

Once a positive diagnosis has been confirmed by a laboratory, this data can be entered onto a potomac horse fever map. The map will then show the number of positive cases of PHF within a specific region or zone.

What States Have Potomac Horse Fever?

Potomac horse fever is now found in over 40 US states, and has spread across the border to Canada. Initially, it was found in areas near the Potomac River, which is how it was named. However, since then PHF has become widespread across the vast majority of the US.

If you live in an area that has high levels of PHF, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk of infection in your horse. The vaccine can reduce the severity of the disease, although it is unlikely to prevent it altogether.

Keep water buckets and feed areas clean to reduce insect populations, and turn off barn lights at night to prevent insects from being attracted. If your field contains a water source such as a river, lake, or stream, consider fencing it off so your horse cannot access it. Alternatively, maintain an area of vegetation along the side of the water to discourage insects from straying away from the water.

Summary – Potomac Horse Fever Map

So, as we have learned, a potomac horse fever map can be used to identify at risk areas, enabling horse owners to be vigilant for the symptoms of PHF. Potomac horse fever (PHF) is a severe infectious disease of horses, caused when horses consume infected parasites and aquatic insects. If left untreated, horses with PHF can develop some serious and debilitating secondary conditions, so prompt and aggressive medical therapy is necessary to treat this disease.

We’d love to hear your thoughts about the potomac horse fever map! Have you ever come across an outbreak of potomac horse fever in a group of horses? Or maybe you’re worried that you may be keeping your horse in an area that is high risk on the potomac horse fever map? Leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you!

Original article: Potomac Horse Fever Map – Where Is This Disease Found? – Best Horse Rider

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