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opposums and horses??? Options
bushwack
#1 Posted : Thursday, August 07, 2003 4:42:45 AM
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Posts: 134,494
ANSWER: The disease is equine protozoal myeloencephalitis, or EPM, and is transmitted from opossums to horses when they eat or drink where infected Opossums have defecated.

The organism responsible for EPM is a parasite, Sarcocystis neurona, a protozoan or microscopic single-cell organism. Opossums contract the parasites by eating infected birds and pass on the parasites through their feces. They do not become infected themselves.

Symptoms are ambiguous, often mimicking other health problems. But experts say that one notable clue is how the disease affects one side or part of the horse more than another.

According to Dr. Rob Franklin, veterinarian at the Humphrey, Giacopuzzi, Cox Equine Hospital in Ventura County, horses with the disease may appear drowsy and nonresponsive, have neurological symptoms in their faces or have trouble with balance and coordination.

A recent area study showed nearly 50% of horses have been exposed to the disease but don''t necessarily contract it. Both a blood test and spinal tap are necessary for a positive diagnosis.

Treatment takes a minimum of six months, involving a combination of antibiotics and coccidiostats, supportive therapy like anti-inflammatory drugs and even vitamin supplements.

Dr.Franklin said one-third of treated horses recover completely, one-third show improvement but may relapse later and one-third succumb to the disease.

EPM is not transmitted from horse to horse or to people. Because it''s tough to keep wild animals from mingling with domestic ones, preventing EPM can be difficult.

Here are a few prevention tips:
* Keep wild animals out of feed rooms and containers. Use standard rodent prevention techniques.
* Feed your horses heat-treated cereal grain and extruded feeds.
* Keep your stalls and barn clean.
* Keep tanks filled with fresh water and keep grain off the ground.

LA Times March 12, 2000
srj
#2 Posted : Thursday, August 07, 2003 4:49:44 AM
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Posts: 134,494
hi rancid seems to be type of encepalitus(spellin ?)heres some links i''m sure here has the answer for ya this is just turned up in a search (opossum horse disease)What is a Matching Site?
Opossum Linked to Horse Disease SCWDS Briefs, January 1996, 11.4 - Opossum Linked to Horse Disease SCWDS Briefs, January 1996, 11.4 Recent research has shed new light on the source of a major neurologic disease of horses. ...
http://www.uga.edu/scwds/topic_index/1996/OPOSSU~1.pdf
''ROAD-KILL HOT LINE'' HELPS UF SOLVE PUZZLE OF HORSE DISEASE - ... lead to improved control of a disease that, according ... Monitoring System survey, cost the US horse industry $27 ... of the parasite released in opossum feces," said ...
http://www.napa.ufl.edu/2001news/horseparasite.htm
Veterinary Sciences Tomorrow ::: an online current awareness ... - ... But the Australian initiative faces stiff competition from a US-backed project to sequence the opossum - an American marsupial ... There are lot of disease genes on ...
http://www.vetscite.org/cgi-bin/pw.exe/Issue4/news/001276.htm
Bayer Your Horse''s Health -- EPM Information - ... neurona. The disease is not transmitted from horse to horse. Rather, the protozoa are spread by the definitive host the opossum. The ...
http://www.yourhorseshealth.com/epm/
September 2001 Road-kill hotline helps UF researchers solve horse ... - ... lead to improved control of a disease that, according ... System survey, cost the US horse industry $27 ... stages of the parasite released in opossum feces,” said ...
http://www.vetmed.ufl.edu/vp/sept01.pdf
hopefully these come up as links,,,,,,,,,,,,,
tc ray
rancid
#3 Posted : Thursday, August 07, 2003 11:29:32 PM
Rank: Guest

Posts: 134,494
Thank you for the excellant answers.
The reason I''m asking is,my nieghbor had 5 cows abort.Then they had to put the cows down.They thought it was something to do with coons in the barn.I trapped 6 from there last year,but can''t even find a coon track this year.BUT I have found lots of opposum sign,and thought that maybe it could be the same disease that horses get.
Thanks again,I have to go through some of the links.Rancid
rancid
#4 Posted : Thursday, August 07, 2003 11:29:32 PM
Rank: Guest

Posts: 134,494
Can anyone tell me the name of the disease that opposums pass on to horses??Thank you. Rancid
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