Minnesota Horse Diagnosed With West Nile Virus, First Since 2016

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Board of Animal Health has confirmed the first case of West Nile virus in a Minnesota horse in more than a year.

The board says it was diagnosed in a 33-year-old American quarter horse in the northwestern town of Euclid in Polk County, just north of Crookston. The mare had poor coordination and weak hind legs when seen by a veterinarian Oct. 9, but showed significant improvement with treatment within a week.

The horse had been vaccinated against the mosquito-borne disease. Dr. Courtney Wheeler of the board’s equine program says the vaccine may not completely prevent the disease, but it’s effective and veterinarians are encouraged to recommend it.

The last previous confirmed case of West Nile in a Minnesota horse had been in August 2016.

Minnesota has documented 23 human cases this year.

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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