BEF EHV-1 Update | UK Cases

The British Equestrian Federation shared:

On Wednesday 10 March 2021 we received confirmation of Equine Herpes virus 1 (EHV-1) infection in a number of horses stabled at a local livery business adjacent to Keysoe International Ltd. We are informed that these cases are currently presenting as a respiratory infection and so far there has been no evidence of neurological EHV. One clinical case is responding well to supportive care and medication and we wish a full and speedy recovery to the affected horse while the others show no outward symptoms.

In accordance with advice from the attending veterinary surgeons managing the situation, appropriate clearance testing is being undertaken for all horses on site, involving nasopharyngeal swabs and paired serology samples. Equine movement restrictions are in place with immediate effect and there are restrictions on the movement of people working at the site as well as heightened biosecurity measures.

The site in question is owned by Keysoe International Ltd, who is the landlord, but the livery yard itself is run by an independent operator as licensed tenants, and is not directly connected to the Keysoe competition complex, which is separated from the affected site by a public road. The original show stables are no longer on the opposite side of the road adjacent to the livery yard. The show stables are now on the same site as Keysoe International Ltd., so all horses connected with competition and show centre activity are within the same complex.

Sarah Stoute, CEO of Keysoe International Ltd. commented; “Working with our tenant we have swiftly put measures in place to mitigate the risk of spreading the virus by containing the livery yard environment and restricting access alongside strict biosecurity practices. The symptomatic horse is responding well to treatment and all other horses are under strict observation.

“I’ve been consulting with member body veterinary advisers alongside valued advice from my own vet so that competition activity at Keysoe International can start at the end of the month as planned. The facilities are separate and vets are confident that the risk is no higher than normal. The safety of our visitors is primary and we would not take any risks if we felt that was compromised. Based on professional and veterinary advice, we hope to open our doors on 30 March as planned.”

Please follow Keysoe International on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and our website for further updates.

British Equestrian and its Emergency Response Group have been made aware of the current EHV-1 cases confirmed at a livery yard adjacent to a major equestrian competition venue in Bedfordshire. Chair of the group, Jenny Hall BVSc MRCVS, has been monitoring the situation with vets involved and is confident all necessary actions and precautions have been taken by all concerned to manage the cases and mitigate any risks of spread.

We will continue to follow the situation closely and work with those involved but there is currently no recommendations for further action.

British Equestrian continues to urge all yard owners, staff and clients to maintain the highest levels of biosecurity at all times, particularly where new horses are arriving on to the yard. Everyone should familiarise themselves with the symptoms of a number of equine diseases such as EHV, equine influenza and strangles and consult their vet immediately if they have any concerns about horses in their care.

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