By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture reported a Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) in a 4-year-old mare in Atlantic County. The animal was euthanized.

Beautiful horses
Public domain image/Dusan Bicanski

This is the first reported case of EEE in New Jersey for 2020. The horse was unvaccinated.

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EEE is a zoonotic, viral disease, transmitted by mosquitoes to both animals and people.

EEE is much more severe than West Nile Virus (WNV).  The mortality rate in horses from WNV is reported at around 30%, while the rate for EEE is almost 90%.  Infected mosquitoes are the primary source for EEE.

The virus causes inflammation or swelling of the brain and spinal cord.  General symptoms include central nervous system signs such as: head pressing, convulsions, lack of response to facial stimulation, fever above 103 degrees, ataxia, paralysis, anorexia, depression and stupor.  Other symptoms may include irregular gait, teeth grinding, in-coordination, circling, and staggering.  All symptoms may not be exhibited by an infected horse.

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