Worms & Germs Blog

Tag Archives: west nile virus

West Nile Virus in Ontario horses

Posted in Horses
Two Ontario horses have recently been diagnosed with West Nile virus infection, prompting the equine health advisory below from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs. That’s not too surprising, as now is the typical time of year that we start seeing this mosquito-borne infection in Ontario. West Nile numbers in both humans and… Continue Reading

Updated Equine West Nile Virus and EEE Maps

Posted in Horses
The title says it all. Here are the most recent maps from WormsAndGermsMap showing equine cases of West Nile virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) virus infection. As with any surveillance, the maps only capture a percentage of the true number of cases, but looking at the geographic distribution and trends in date-of-onset can still be informative. West… Continue Reading

Equine Arbovirus Update

Posted in Horses, Other diseases
Arboviruses (ARthropod-BOrne viruses) are viruses that are spread by insects, often mosquitoes. As I’ve written about recently, mosquito biology and differences in reservoir species mean that mosquito-borne viruses can have quite different patterns of distribution and spread. As is common, the occurrence of West Nile virus infection in horses tends to ramp up in late… Continue Reading

West Nile virus in Ontario

Posted in Horses, Vaccination
The season has arrived. Right on schedule, the first case of West Nile virus (WNV)  infection in an Ontario horse has been identified, prompting an advisory from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA). The affected horse was from Sudbury, Ontario, and was euthanized because of progressive and severe neurological disease. It… Continue Reading

Never a simple story: West Nile in California

Posted in Other diseases
Orange County CA is currently experiencing a major outbreak of West Nile infection in people. Since January 94 cases have been confirmed, three of which were fatal, representing nearly a quarter of the 400 cases reported across the country so far this year. The number of cases of infection with a mosquito-borne virus like West… Continue Reading

St. Louis encephalitis in a horse

Posted in Horses
Hopefully we can chalk this one up on the "weird and not-so-wonderful" list, and not have it emerge as a significant problem. However, there’s something new to pay attention to as St. Louis Encephalitis virus (SLEV) infection was recently identified in a Brazilian horse with neurological clinical signs. SLEV is a Flavivirus and a relative… Continue Reading

West Nile virus in Colorado

Posted in Horses
It’s that time of year again… at least in some areas. West Nile virus (WNV) infection has been identified in a horse in Colorado. It’s not really a surprise. West Nile virus is one of those pathogens that we know is coming back every year, we just don’t know exactly when. The date of return… Continue Reading

Equine West Nile virus advisory: Ontario

Posted in Horses
The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs has issued a disease advisory to Ontario equine veterinarians about West Nile virus (WNV), but not in response to cases of WNV in Ontario horses. In fact, to date, there have been no reported cases in horses in the province this year. However, no reported cases only… Continue Reading

Banner year for West Nile virus

Posted in Cats
After being a relatively rare problem in most regions over the past few years, West Nile virus (WNV) case numbers have boomed lately, with large outbreaks in some US states. Canada Forty-nine (49) confirmed or probable human cases have been reported in Ontario, the largest number in a decade. Considering we’re just heading into the… Continue Reading

Eastern Equine encephalitis alert: Ontario

Posted in Horses
If I was reincarnated as a mosquito, I’d want to live where I do now (convenient, eh?). I live in the country surrounded by areas of "protected wetland," which, in many cases, is a fancy word for swamp. I try to avoid mosquitoes, but getting bitten is a regular (daily) event. As I was getting swarmed… Continue Reading

Early West Nile virus case in Pennsylvania horse?

Posted in Horses
Local media are reporting an apparent case of West Nile virus infection in a horse in Northampton County, Pennsylvania. This is surprising since, while I know there are certainly mosquitoes emerging early with this mild weather, seeing active mosquito-borne infections at this time of year would be very unusual. That’s particularly the case with West… Continue Reading

Hitch-hiking mosquitoes and emerging diseases

Posted in Horses
Authorities in Hawaii are advising people in Oahu to eliminate standing water as a mosquito control measure. While it’s always a good idea, it’s of particular concern in this case bacause a rare type of mosquito, Aedes aegypti, was found around the Honolulu International Airport. This mosquito species is a highly effective vector for various… Continue Reading

BC’s not-so-West Nile case

Posted in Horses
Following reports of a veterinarian warning colleagues and horse owners about West Nile infection in a British Columbia horse, Dr Brian Radke, a Public Health Veterinarian at the BC Ministry of Agriculture, has clarified the situation. "The BCCDC co-ordinates WNV surveillance for the province of BC including monitoring of mosquitoes, birds, horses and humans. The… Continue Reading

West Nile warning for BC horses

Posted in Horses
A Prince George, British Columbia veterinarian is warning other veterinarians and horse owners about West Nile in the province. Little information is available at this point, but the warning is in response to a diagnosis of West Nile infection in a horse from the area. The report calls it a "deadly disease" but it would… Continue Reading

Equine Infectious Neurological Disease Update: Ontario

Posted in equIDblog
The latest update on equine infecious neurological diseases in Ontario (Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), West Nile virus (WNV), rabies and neuropathic equine herpevirus type 1 (EHV-1)) is available from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. There aren’t a lot of surprises, and it’s good to see the numbers of cases have remained… Continue Reading

More Mosquito-Borne Mayhem

Posted in equIDblog
The mosquito-borne diseases eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile (WNV) continue to rear their ugly heads in the northeast as we get further into the late summer season during which they are most common. On August 13 there was an unconfirmed report of a case of West Nile in a horse at Woodbine Racetrack,… Continue Reading

West Nile Warnings

Posted in equIDblog
Following on the heels of the beginning of the start eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) season, warnings are going out about another mosquito-borne disease in parts of North America, West Nile virus (WNV) encephalitis. While mosquitoes have been swarming around here for months, WNV only becomes a real concern in southwestern Ontario starting in mid-to-late August.… Continue Reading

Natural disasters and pet diseases

Posted in Dogs
After the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, there were numerous efforts to rescue animals left homeless or ownerless. As part of this, some animals were shipped far away, including large numbers to the Northeastern US and Canada. It was a time-consuming and expensive endeavour by very well-meaning people, but was accompanied by much controversy. Beyond… Continue Reading

West Nile virus from pony to vet student

Posted in Horses
The latest edition of the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases contains an article about a South African vet student that acquired West Nile virus from a pony while performing a necropsy. Occupational exposure to infectious diseases is an inherent risk in veterinary medicine. Veterinarians know that they are at higher risk of encountering various infectious diseases… Continue Reading

Dogs and dead birds

Posted in Birds, Dogs, Salmonella
As the owner of a dog that loves to roll in (and eat) anything she finds, I certainly understand the questions that I get about risks to dogs from dead birds. Eating a dead bird is certainly not an appealing thought to us, but overall, the risks to a dog are pretty low. The greatest… Continue Reading

West Nile virus in dogs and cats

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Other diseases
One thing that has become very clear around my house the past few days is that mosquito season has arrived. Along with the annoyance, buzzing and itching, mosquitoes are of concern because they can transmit various viruses, including West Nile virus. While West Nile season tends to be later in the summer and fall in… Continue Reading