We’ve been fielding questions about the recent cases of EHM that were dealt with in Deschutes County, Oregon. These horses were from show barns. Both horses had been to the Oregon Horse Center, in Eugene, Oregon. Neither horse had contact, that we know of, with horses from the endurance world.
After much conferring with the Mary And Anna Ride Management Team and our local, very involved ride veterinarians, Dr Cassee Terry of Redmond Veterinary Clinic and Dr Shannon Findley of Bend Equine, we all are in agreement to go ahead with the ride at this time. We feel that the Mary and Anna Memorial Ride is at the end of the suggested two week quarantine period that has been suggested.
What we need from our riders:
As we suggested yesterday, we’re hoping that folks booster their horse’s Rhino vaccines.
In addition, we’re asking our riders to begin monitoring their horse’s temperatures daily. Please, if you don’t already have one, go and purchase a thermometer. Digital thermometers can be purchased at nearly any store. Please get one and start doing this as soon as possible. This achieves two things. It gets your horses conditioned to having their temperatures taken, and it keeps you, the rider, informed about what’s going on inside your horse. If your horse’s temperature goes over 101° F, please call your veterinarian and discuss this with them.
If you have been to the Oregon Horse Center with one of your horses, during April or May, or you have had your horse around another horse who’s been to the Oregon Horse Center, we’re asking you to please not attend the Mary and Anna Memorial Ride. This is hard to do, but it’s the right thing to do.
At the ride:
Your horse’s temperature will be taken at your vet in. From that point forward, we’re asking riders/crews to monitor their horse’s temperatures daily while on the Outback Station grounds. This means, bring that thermometer you’ve been using. We will have a spreadsheet in the vet area where you will enter your horse’s temperature every day that you’re on the venue. This helps us monitor the horses. If your horse shows any sign of fever or illness, you will be asked to remove the horse from the venue immediately. If you’ve been monitoring your horse at home, this shouldn’t be an issue.
Please use the hoses to fill your horse’s water buckets, or dip out of the tanks and carry the water to your camp. Please limit allowing your horses to drink directly out of the camp tanks as much as possible. We realize this is not possible out on the trails, but we’re really hoping that anyone with a potentially sick horse would stay home from the ride.
Please keep your horses “socially distanced”. i.e. no “nose to nose” interactions between your horses. Keep a reasonable, i.e. horse length, distance between yourselves at the vet areas. Please self enforce, so we don’t have to.
The ride will go on.
Stay tuned in case we have to make an about face. The fact is, as ride managers, we faced a similar dilemma in 2011 when an outbreak of EHV hit the Portland area. We employed judicious bio-security measures and had a successful Mt Adams ride, even in the eyes of the state veterinarian, who showed up to check health papers and observe. That outbreak was in a reiner barn. We acknowledged at the time, that there is little to no crossover from reiners to endurance. We feel similarly this time around.
Please be safe, be responsible and be sensible where your horses are concerned. Take the next couple of weeks to really observe your horses and limit your exposure to strange horses. Update that Rhino vaccine and plan to join us at the Mary and Anna Memorial Ride.
Max and I are headed out this evening to being marking trails in the morning and will have limited cell service.
Some useful links:
Take care and we’ll see you and your healthy, happy, fit horses very soon!
~Darlene, Max, the entire Management Team and Ride Veterinarians