What is strangles in a horse

How does a horse get strangles?

To get strangles, a horse needs to be exposed to S. equi. This can happen if the horse has direct contact with an infected/carrier horse, or if it has indirect contact with an infected/carrier horse. Indirect contact occurs when horses touch a common surface, object or person, but not each other.

How do you treat strangles in horses?

The best treatment at this point is to flush the drainage site, keep the area as clean as possible, and to maintain strict isolation of the ill horse. If your horse was stabled near one who had strangles at a show or rodeo, it is reasonable to treat it with antibiotics for at least six days after exposure.

Can strangles kill a horse?

So-called because the infection doesn’t follow the normal disease pattern, bastard strangles affects lymph nodes in the chest and abdomen. As these internal abscesses progress, they can’t be drained or effectively treated, and their rupture within the body cavity usually results in the horse’s death.

How long does strangles last in a horse?

How serious is it? Most animals fully recover from strangles in two to four weeks. Although enduring immunity against re-infection is variable, in some equids it can last for years. However, not all horses develop a protective immunity upon recovery.

Can a human get strangles?

Transmission to Humans.

In rare cases, humans have contracted infections from the bacteria that cause Strangles. To prevent human infection, people caring for horses with Strangles should avoid getting any nasal or abscess discharge from the horse on their eyes, nose, or mouth.

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What disinfectant kills strangles?

Strangles is easily killed by most disinfectants and doesn’t survive well in direct sunlight. But it can live for up to 6 weeks in water troughs or drinkers. Virkon is a good disinfectant to use as it is not deactivated by organic material.

How do you prevent strangles in horses?


  1. When away from home use your own buckets, limit mingling with other horses, wash your hands after handling other horses.
  2. At home have separate grooming kit, tack and buckets for each horse.
  3. Anyone moving between horses on various yards should wash hands, disinfect boots, and if possible change outer clothes.

Can a horse get strangles if vaccinated?

It is known that following vaccination, immunity will take a minimum of two to four weeks and the highest titers are usually obtained by eight weeks. Thus during an outbreak, if a horse is vaccinated and is then exposed to the infected horses before he has developed adequate immunity, he may contract strangles.”

What does strangles look like in a horse?

Clinical Signs:

In typical cases, horses develop a high fever, are depressed, and develop a clear nasal discharge that becomes thick and white. The mandibular and retropharyngeal lymph nodes are initially firm but become fluctuant and swollen attributing to the colorful name of the disease.

How often should a horse be vaccinated for strangles?

Once a horse receives the initial strangles vaccine, he’ll need a booster in three weeks to become completely protected. After that, yearly or twice yearly boosters are recommended based on overall risk of exposure.

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How long can strangles survive on clothing?

Strangles is a highly contagious disease which can spread quickly through a yard via direct horse to horse contact or indirectly through tack, shared drinking water and on clothing. The bacteria can survive in water for up to four weeks. Strangles is endemic within the UK.

Is strangles an airborne disease?

Whilst strangles is not spread through the air (airborne), the bacteria can spread when a horse with strangles coughs or snorts.

Can strangles in horses be transmitted to dogs?

About strangles

Strangles is spread to other horses by direct contact and can also be spread by contaminated food, water, equipment, handlers and their clothing as well as other animals, eg dogs, that may come into contact with the horses.

What is the number one killer of horses?


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