Find My Horses Presents: Horse Tests Positive in Colorado
Horse Tests Positive in Colorado
This is an exact copy of the actual news article. If you click on the link be warned the site is VERY Slow to load. There is a video on the site, but after 15 mins of trying to get the page to load, I could never get the video to load.
AURORA, Colo. -- A horse race track was under quarantine Friday after a nonrace horse tested positive for equine infectious anemia.
While it's not harmful to humans, about 900 horses are stabled at Arapahoe Park in Aurora. Those horses are not allowed to leave the facility, and new horses are not allowed in.
The facility has been proactive in handling the situation.
"It's 'where horses come first,'" announcer Jonathan Horowitz said. "And so the most important thing is to make sure the animals are taken care of."
That's why it's so tough for one owner, who was left with a difficult decision.
"For the young lady that owns the horse, she's heartbroken because there is no cure for this disease," said Shannon Rushton, the executive director for the Colorado Horse Racing Association.
The horse must be euthanized or kept in isolation from other horses for the rest of its life. That's after testing positive for EIA, also known as "swamp fever."
It's a viral disease impacting horses, mules, and donkeys. It's spread by biting flies. Symptoms include high fever, weakness, and even death. But some infected horses show no symptoms, including the horse that tested positive at Arapahoe Park.
"If you look at the horse, you would never even think anything is even wrong," Rushton said. "This horse looks as healthy as any horse I've ever seen."
It's a rare disease, especially in Colorado. The state reported zero cases in 2015. The most cases reported in the state in the past several years was 14 in 2004. Officials said the risk to the 900 other horses at the facility was low, as it's early in the fly season.
"The track is taking the appropriate measures to spray for flies," Rushton said.
As such, the races will go on. Arapahoe Park will be open for spectators this weekend.
"The horses that are here will be part of the races," Horowitz said. "There will be no new horses coming in."
The horse that tested positive is isolated from the other horses. A secondary confirmation test was taken Friday with results expected next week. The Department of Agriculture believes the horse contracted the disease out of state. It has only been in Colorado for 60 days.
"It was caught relatively quickly," Horowitz said.