Virus Found in Chatham County Horse - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Virus Found in Chatham County Horse

CHATHAM COUNTY, GA -

Officials with the Coastal Health District says a horse in West Chatham County tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), a virus that is transmitted by infected mosquitoes.

  Horses are susceptible to EEE and Chatham County Health Department Environmental Health officials are encouraging all horse owners to vaccinate their animals against the virus.

   Eastern Equine Encephalitis is a mosquito-borne virus that can cause swelling of the brain. In horses, it is fatal 70 to 90 percent of the time according to health officials.  District officials horse and large animal owners are also encouraged to clean out watering sources, such as buckets and troughs, every three-to-four days to prevent mosquitoes from breeding there.

   Health officials say though EEE infection in humans is rare, the finding of an EEE infection in a local horse is indicative of an increased risk to humans.

  Coastal Health District officials say it is important to remember that mosquitoes are still active in coastal Georgia and the best way to prevent getting mosquito borne diseases is to keep from getting bitten by mosquitoes. Residents, particularly those that live near fresh water swamps, are encouraged to take precautions to minimize mosquitoes around property including regularly checking for and removing standing water from outside containers.

 In addition:

● DRAIN all standing water

● Avoid DAWN and DUSK when mosquitoes are most active ● DRESS appropriately in long sleeves and pants ● DEFEND or DEET yourself against mosquitoes with an effective repellent ● DOORS and windows should be in good condition

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