Palm Beach International Equestrian Center Denies Entry of Horse With High Temperature that Tests Negative for Equine Herpes Virus
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WELLINGTON, Florida, Mar. 10, 2021–A horse with a high temperature was refused entry to the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center Wednesday but tested negative for Equine Herpes Virus that the Winter Equestrian Festival organizers said showed the need for biosecurity precautions that are required throughout the dressage and jumping show grounds.
Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP) that organizes the Winter Equestrian Festival of jumpers and hunters and the Global Dressage Festival thast is staging an international para dressage competition this week gave a detailed description of the procedures surrounding the horse.
Jumping competitions have been staged at the sprawling PBIEC facility almost weekly since the end of May without any siginificant incidents involving coronavirus while dressage began in December. Both are in the final weeks of the winter-long circuits that have applied biosecurity protocols for humans as a result of the year-long coronavirus pandemic and for horses amidst the Equine Herpes Virus EHV-1 that has spread throughout Europe in the past six weeks leading to a lockdown of horse shows in several nations.
ESP said a horse was restricted from entering the FEI compound at PBIEC. The horse was tested on its private farm using a rapid result test by its personal veterinarian on Tuesday after it presented with a fever. The horse was not on PBIEC property.
The horse, described as “Horse A” was found at pre-check before entering the show grounds to have a fever of 103F/39.4C. The horse was not allowed access to FEI stabling and sent back to its home stable where it has been isolated.
“A barn-mate of ‘Horse A’ was removed from FEI stabling due to close contact. ‘Horse B’ has not had a fever or any other symptoms and is also in isolated stabling at its home stable,” ESP said. “All athletes that had horses stabled in the proximity of Horse B were notified and took extra biosecurity precautions.
The athlete of Horses A and B had a third horse, “C” that is currently stabled in the FEI compound. This horse competed last week in the Nations Cup competition. In several conversations with the athlete, ESP said the athlete assured management the horse was placed in a separate quarantine stable at the private farm after competing last week and had no contact with either of the two horses, “A” or “B.”
ESP management said it coordinated with the personal vet as well as the WEF Veterinary Delegate, FEI Lead Steward, FEI Foreign Steward and Official Veterinarians Palm Beach Equine Clinic to closely monitor the situation.
Any horses shipped into the dressage and jumping PBIEC facilities are required to sign a declaration stating the horses have not competed at other Florida venues outside of Wellington or been in close contact with horses that competed in other Florida venues outside of Wellington within 10 days prior to their arrival.
Starting this week, all horses shipping onto PBIEC require a health certificate or statement on official licensed veterinarian letterhead and must be dated by a veterinarian within seven days of arriving.
All barns on the show grounds are required to maintain a temperature log with twice-daily recordings.