Potomac Horse Fever Diagnosed in Livingston County

With this very wet spring we have had, there has been a confirmed case of Potomac Horse Fever in Livingston County in a horse that has not traveled out of the area.

Potomac Horse Fever causes diarrhea, fever, and potentially laminitis from bacterial endotoxin release. It is spread by a combined life cycle involving snails/slugs and mayflies or other insects that lay eggs in water.  It is typically seen as the temperatures increase in the summer, so there is a concern that more cases may crop up now that Neorickettsia risticii has been confirmed in the area. 

There is a Potomac Horse Fever vaccine available which offers some protection.

We would love to discuss vaccination or prevention strategies for your horses via email hendersonequine@gmail.com or phone 585-243-5560.

EEE virus kills Oswego County horse 9-3-14

Syracuse, N.Y. -- A horse in southern Oswego County has died of Eastern equine encephalitis virus, the first reported EEE horse death this year in the state.

The Oswego County Health Department said the horse had been stabled near an area known to harbor the EEE virus in Oswego and Onondaga counties. The horse was probably exposed to EEE in late July, prior to the aerial spraying of the Toad Harbor - Three Mile Bay Wild Management Area, according to the department.

Horses are very susceptible to EEE if they are not vaccinated. About 70 percent to 90 percent of all all horses infected with the virus die. No documentation has been found to indicate if horse had been properly vaccinated against EEE, according to the health department.

EEE is carried by mosquitoes. While there is a vaccine for horses, there is no human vaccine available to the public.

Human cases of EEE are rare, but very serious. About one-third of people infected with EEE die. An Onondaga County resident recently diagnosed with EEE is recovering from the virus. Five people in Central New York have died of EEE since 1971.

Both Oswego and Onondaga counties have recently done aerial spraying to combat mosquitoes. Onondaga plans to do ground spraying Monday and Tuesday in neighborhoods near the Cicero Swamp.

Jiancheng Huang, Oswego County's public health director, said more evidence of EEE was recently found in mosquitoes collected from the Toad Harbor-Three Mile Bay area.

"People need to be very careful about limiting their exposure to mosquitoes until later in the fall when there is a killing frost," Huang said.

The health department advised residents to use mosquito repellent when outdoors and take other protective measures.

You can contact health writer James T. Mulder at jmulder@syracuse.com or (315) 470-2245. Follow him on Twitter @JamesTMulder

Henderson Equine Clinic expands and innovates

Valley Horses: Henderson Equine Clinic expands and innovates

Posted: Saturday, March 1, 2014 2:00 am

The last 12 months have brought many changes for the Henderson Equine Clinic, which has experienced a trifecta of exciting advances in its ability to provide quality services for both equines and small ruminants.

A year ago this month, Dr. Anne Dewar joined Dr. Bonny Henderson, who established her veterinary practice in the Valley after achieving her doctor of veterinary medicine degree at Cornell in 1994. Originally from the Saratoga area, Henderson first came to the Valley as an undergraduate at SUNY Geneseo, where she expanded her equestrian experience to include the joys of foxhunting under the tutelage of Judge J. Robert Houston and Dan Wade.

Dewar discovered the area in part through her affinity for small ruminants, coming to know Matt Kyle who owns the sheep seen grazing in various locations in the northern part of Livingston County. Dewar spent her first two years in practice at Finger Lakes Equine with Dr. Bob Tugel at Finger Lakes Racetrack after gaining her DVM degree at Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, a collaboration between Virginia Tech and the University of Maryland spread over three campuses that specialize in sports medicine, research, and surgical practices. Coming from an equestrian background in pleasure and endurance riding, Dewar has now become an avid foxhunter as well.

In the equine field, her specialties are lameness and reproduction, though she also feels a special fondness and calling in working with smaller multi-stomached livestock such as sheep, alpacas, goats, etc.

Henderson remarks that “Anne has a solid background and amazing retention of what she has seen, read and learned over the years. She is also very practical in her advice and recommendations for treatment. We hit it off very quickly and make a great team, along with office manager Tracy Scalise.”

The next big development in 2013 was last fall’s move of the clinic from its original location on Groveland Road near the Interstate 390 overpass to a 20-acre piece of an old dairy farm on Fowlerville Road in Avon. Renovations on the old barn are still in progress and will eventually include a small indoor ring for assessing soundness and other practical uses. For now, there is a spacious exam area, well-equipped laboratory, three treatment stalls, stocks and ample parking for all sizes of livestock transports.

In the technology realm, the clinic is now offering K-Laser Class IV therapeutic laser treatments for advanced pain relief and enhanced tissue healing.

“We are very excited to offer these treatments to our patients,” Dr. Bonny said. “Lasers have been used in Europe for dozens of years, but are relatively new here in the U.S. The K-Laser is an effective treatment for many conditions.”

Although the K-Laser is being used by numerous veterinary health care providers throughout the U.S and the world, the Henderson Clinic is unique in this area with offering this service.

Henderson went on the say, “We can help patients in more ways that we could before, in a safe, effective, drug-free manner. The K-Laser is a wonderful addition to our clinic. It’s very exciting to help our patients get the results they want, and with minimal side effects. We have been treating equine and canine arthritis, wounds, lick granulomas, chronic intervertebral disc disease in chiropractic patients, tendonitis, sprains/strains, sore back, otitis, post-surgical incisions, and trauma.”

Laser therapy works by stimulating production of cellular energy in damaged cells and by enhancing the cell membrane permeability. This promotes the speed and quality of healing, enhances the exchange of nutrients and wastes across the cell membrane and improves the elasticity of injured tissues.

Laser therapy also modulates pain and reduces inflammation. It can be used immediately on acute injuries, over broken skin, and over metal implants. Laser therapy enhances the rate and quality of injuries and can help with the resolution of chronic complaints such asarthritis.

Perhaps best of all, the actual instrument itself is battery-powered, relatively small, and light enough to be easily handled and focused. For more information on the K-Laser, visit the company website at www.k-laserusa.com.

As my visit to the clinic was concluding, I happened to glance at what appeared to be a heavy catalog on the office counter.  Almost as an afterthought, Henderson inquired, “Oh yes, did I happen to tell you about my book?”

Picking up the weighty tome, I was immediately impressed by the scope of the 20 chapters, as well as the numerous, top-quality, color photos and illustrations.  

“Equine Health and Emergency Management” provides essential knowledge in all aspects of horse care. The book begins by emphasizing the importance of horsemanship in the prevention of injury and disease. Key factors of facility safety and stable management are identified as essential in equine ownership, as is a thorough understanding and knowledge of the healthy horse, broodmare, and foal.

Once this essential knowledge base is achieved, the book progresses to discussion of preparing for and managing emergencies.  Assessment and treatment skills are addressed. Diseases and trauma of each body system are also covered outlining the clinical signs, vital signs, history or possible causes, actions to take, and prevention strategies for each.

The book concludes by addressing the assessment, planning, and preparation needs when faced with man-made or natural disaster.

Published by Centage Learning in 2012, the book was obviously a prolonged labor of love. It is available on Amazon, and would no doubt be a worthy addition to any horse owner’s library — or better yet — tack room.

Thanks to the Livingston County News and to Sally Fox for this very nice article.

Henderson Equine Clinic's New Christmas Present! A Cube4 K-Laser!

We are excited to announce that we are now utilizing a Class 4 Therapeutic Laser system from K-Laser as an additional therapy for our patients.  

Laser Therapy or "photobiomodulation", is the use of specific wavelengths of light (red and near infrared) to create therapeutic effects. These effects include improved healing time, pain reduction, increased circulation and decreased swelling.

Laser therapy has the potential to have MANY beneficial effects and you may have seen or heard some seemingly outrageous claims over the years with regards to what lasers can do.  

That said there are four widely accepted therapeutic benefits of laser therapy that can be backed up with peer reviewed scientific research:

1) Biostimulation/Tissue Regeneration

2) Reduction of Inflammation

3) Pain reduction, either chronic or acute

4) Antibacterial and Antiviral

Bio stimulation and tissue regeneration are the first effects cited in much of the literature. 

So what does this do for the patient? 

Some therapeutic applications which have shown promising results in horses based on studies include:

Arthritis • Back Pain •  Dental Applications • Laminitis • Nerve Regeneration  • Pain (Musculoskeletal, Myofascial, Nerve) • Scars •  Skin Disorders • Sports Injuries • Tendonitis • Wound Healing


The effects of red light on cellular function have been known since 1880 however the clinical benefits were only discovered by accident during laser safety tests in 1967. The first low-power lasers suitable for treating pain became available commercially in the late 1970's and ever since then, laser therapy has been widely utilized in Europe by physical therapists, nurses and doctors. Now, after FDA approval in 2001, laser therapy is quickly gaining popularity in the USA.


Dr Bonnie is very excited to be able to offer laser therapy to her chiropractic, especially to help relax muscles and decrease inflammation in areas that the patient may dislike having adjusted.  For her accupuncture clients, she is able to utilize a setting on the Laser that is used to stimulate accupuncture points, allowing accupuncture treatment of needle shy animals, or of points that may be difficult to place needles.


Dr Anne has been using therapeutic laser treatments on some of our older arthritic patients and has been seeing improved movement and decreased pain!  She's very excited to have laser therapy available to the equine athlete portion of our patient population as well, and will be using laser therapy as an adjunctive treatment for sports medicine conditions.  

We will also be offering laser therapy to help speed wound healing and decrease the formation of proud flesh and scar tissue!


Changes to USEF and FEI Drugs and Medications Rules for 2014!

Important Changes to the both USEF and FEI Drugs & Medications Rules for Competition Horses Will Affect the 2014 Competition Year

RELEASE: November 27, 2013
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: USEF Communications Department

Prohibited Practices

A new category of rules referred to as Prohibited Practices has been introduced to the USEF Rule Book which will take effect December 1, 2013.  The first rule to be adopted in this category is commonly referred to as the "12 Hour Rule." It was introduced in March of 2013 by the USEF Veterinary Committee and following extensive feedback from USEF Technical Committees, Working Groups, and from attendees at USEF Town Hall Meetings held in Florida in March, and via interactive webcast in June, the USEF Board of Directors at their mid-year meeting approved the proposal which is printed in its entirety here:

GR 414 Prohibited Practices

1. No injectable substances may be administered to any horse or pony within 12 hours prior to competing, with the following three exceptions subject to paragraph 2 below:

a. Therapeutic fluids, which amount must consist of a minimum of 10L of polyionic fluids; and which must be used in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations and guidelines. The fluids must not be supplemented with concentrated electrolytes, such as magnesium.

b. Antibiotics. Procaine penicillin G is prohibited under this exception.

c. Dexamethasone. This is permitted only for the treatment of acute urticaria(hives). The dose must not exceed 0.5 mg per 100lb (5.0 mg for 1000lb horse) if administered more than 6 hours and less than 12 hours prior to entering the competition ring, and must not exceed 1.0 mg per 100lb (10.0 mg for 1000lb horse) within any 24-hour period.

2. The above exceptions are permitted only when (i) the substance is administered by a licensed veterinarian and no less than six hours prior to competing; and (ii) the "Trainer" as defined under General Rule 404 properly files, or causes to be properly filed, an Equine Drugs and Medications Report Form with the Steward/Technical Delegate or competition office representative within one hour after the administration of the substance or one hour after the Steward/Technical Delegate or competition office representative returns to duty if the administration occurs at a time outside competition hours. The Steward/Technical Delegate or competition office representative shall sign and record the time of receipt on the Equine Drugs and Medications Report Form.

In summary, there are a few bullet points to remember about this rule change.

• No horses or ponies may be injected within twelve hours of competing.
• There are only three exceptions to this rule: therapeutic fluids, antibiotics, and Dexamethasone (for the treatment of hives).
• All excepted substances must be administered by a veterinarian and cannot be administered to a horse or pony  within six hours of competing.

There are three restricted medications that are affected by this change:

• Dexamethasone (Azium®)  - maximum 24 hour dose has been decreased from 20mg/1000lb horse to 10mg/1000lb horse and must be administered in accordance with the new "12 Hour Rule" GR414.
• Ketoprofen (Ketofen®) - maximum 24 hour dose 1.0 gram/1000lb horse remains the same, however it must be administered within 12 hours prior to competition.
• Methocarbamol (Robaxin®) - maximum 24 hour dose 5.0grams/1000lb horse remains the same, however must be administered within 12 hours prior to competition.


The FEI Bureau has approved changes to the FEI Equine Prohibited Substances List proposed by the FEI List Group. The new List will become effective January 1, 2014.

The changes are summarized here and below:

Two new Controlled Medication substances have been added to the List for 2014:
• Metformin - a potent but legitimate oral anti-diabetic drug with a potential welfare risk;
• Levothyroxine - an exogenous thyroid hormone replacement that could enhance performance;
Adrenocortico-trophic hormone (ACTH)is currently classified as a Banned Substance and will be moved to the Controlled Medication section of the 2014 List due to its therapeutic value in equine medicine.

Three previously unlisted substanceswill be added to the Banned Substances section of the 2014 List, as they are considered to have a potential for abuse, or to improve athletic performance:
• Ammonium Chloride injectable
• Gamma-Butyrolactone (GBL)
• Gamma-Hydroxybutyrate (GHB)
The changes to the FEI Equine Prohibited Substances List are also accessible on the FEI Clean Sport webpage. The FEI Equine Prohibited Substances Database will be amended and the complete 2014 Equine Prohibited Substances List will be made available on the Clean Sport website prior to January 1, 2014.

These changes have been noticed in accordance with FEI Rules requiring all changes to the List to be published 90 days in advance in order to allow National Federations, athletes and veterinarians sufficient time to familiarize themselves with the revised List prior to implementation.

The new competition year begins December 1, 2013. The USEF encourages every exhibitor, trainer, coach, and owner to take time, prior to competing, to carefully review the "Guidelines for How Long Drugs Remain Detectable" which is included in the 2014 USEF Drugs & Medications Guidelines and can be accessed by clicking here or by contacting the USEF Drugs & Medication Program atMedequestrian@aol.com. You may also call the USEF Drugs & Medications office at  800-633-2472 to request a copy.

Attention Horse Owners!

Concerned about reports of mosquito carried diseases such as Eastern Equine Encephalitis, or West Nile Virus cropping up in Western New York?

If you vaccinated your horse this spring, consider boostering them with a 3way vaccine (Eastern, Western, and Tetanus) with West Nile Virus for the fall mosquito season.

If you haven't had your horse's annual vaccines done, NOW is the TIME!

NY State Ag and Markets is offering a $15.00 rebate on Encephalitis vaccination for horse owners through September 30th

We have a limited number of rebates available and are offering them on a first come first serve basis. 

Rabid Skunk confirmed in Livingston County

Here is an article from the Livingston County News:

Rabid skunk confirmed in Livingston County

The Livingston County Department of Health reports that a skunk killed in northeastern Livingston County has tested positive for rabies.

The skunk attacked a litter of kittens in the front yard of a Lima home during daylight hours on July 29. A resident of the property killed the skunk and submitted it to the Health Department for analysis.

“Although the incident occurred in the Town of Lima, rabies can be found throughout Livingston County,” said Dan Bowlds, senior public health sanitarian for the Department of Health.

The Department of Health learned July 31 that the sunk was positive for rabies. The news was announced Aug. 20 in a news release from the Department of Health.

Rabies is a deadly virus that attacks the central nervous system of mammals. It is largely found in raccoons, foxes, skunks, and bats in many areas, including Livingston County.

Other mammals, including unvaccinated dogs and cats, are at risk for getting rabies. State law requires that all dogs, cats and ferrets be vaccinated at 4 months of age.

The Health Department reminds residents that caution should be taken around any unfamiliar animals. Wild animals especially should be avoided.

Signs of rabies in wildlife can include: inability to walk, appearance of “drunkenness,” unwillingness to drink water or eat, frothing at the mouth, aggressive behavior and/or a massive swing in temperament.

The best form of defense for keeping your pet safe is to keep them vaccinated. An unvaccinated pet that comes into contact with a rabid animal must be kept in strict confinement for 6 months or euthanized.

Here are some tips to help prevent rabies:

— Teach children to stay away from unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly.

— Wash any wound from an animal thoroughly with soap and water, and seek medical attention immediately.

— If your family or your pet has been exposed to a bat, capture the bat and have it tested for rabies. If you awaken to find a bat in your bedroom, or a bat is present in the room of an unattended or sleeping child or in a room where someone has a mental impairment, seek medical advice and have the bat tested.

— Be a responsible pet owner by keeping your pet’s vaccinations current.

A free rabies clinic for dogs, cats and ferrets is scheduled Sept. 17, 2013 at the Livingston County Highway Department complex at Hampton Corners.

If you have any questions or would like further information on rabies, please contact the Livingston County Department of Health at 243-7280 or 335-1717.

- See more at: http://thelcn.com/2013/08/20/rabid-skunk-confirmed-in-livingston-county/#sthash.0UE9QJva.dpuf

NYS Agencies Encourage Horse Owners to Vaccinate their Horses Against Diseases

State Agencies Encourage Horse Owners to Vaccinate their Horses Against Diseases



State Agriculture Commissioner Darrel J. Aubertine, State Health Commissioner Nirav R. Shah and State Gaming Commission Acting Director Robert Williams today urged horse owners across New York State to vaccinate their horses against Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV).  In 2012, two cases of EEE were reported in horses in New York State, as well as seven WNV cases.  No confirmed cases of either disease have been reported thus far in 2013. 

“Every year in New York, cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis and West Nile Virus pop up in horses across the state – diseases which are largely preventable,” said Commissioner Aubertine.  “Good prevention programs are a key component to any animal health plan and I encourage horse owners across New York to take the necessary precautions and vaccinate their horses against these diseases today.”  

While it is preferable to vaccinate horses against these diseases in the spring before the mosquitoes that transmit them are active, early summer is not too late, since New York often has mosquito activity into the month of November.  Vaccines for EEE and WNV can be effective for six to twelve months, and horses should be re-vaccinated at least annually. In an area where the diseases occur year round, many veterinarians recommend vaccinations every six months. For the vaccine to be effective, it must be handled and administered properly, prior to an anticipated increase in mosquito activity in a local area.  For these reasons, state veterinarian David Smith recommends that the vaccines be administered by a veterinarian. 

Other prevention methods include eliminating standing water breeding sites for mosquitoes, using insect repellents and removing animals from mosquito-infested areas during peak biting times, usually from dusk to dawn.  In addition, water in water troughs should be changed at least twice a week to discourage mosquito breeding.

There is no human vaccine for EEE or WNV. The best way to protect yourself is to keep mosquitoes from biting you. EEE is rare but serious and can affect both people and horses. Five cases have been diagnosed in humans in New York State since 1971 and all have been fatal. Prior to 2009, there had not been a human case detected in the State in more than 25 years.

WNV is more common than EEE and can also cause serious illness or, in some cases, death. Not all mosquitoes carry WNV, but human cases have been reported in counties across the State. In 2012, there were 107 reported human cases of WNV statewide, nine of which were fatal.

To greatly minimize exposure to WNV and EEE, the New York State Department of Health (DOH) recommends that people take precautionary measures, such as wearing shoes, socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for a long period of time. People are also advised to apply appropriate mosquito repellent according to the label’s instructions and to remove all standing water from their property.

“In addition to the health risks posed to the general public, West Nile virus and EEE can cause serious problems for horses and their owners and handlers in New York State,” said State Health Commissioner, Nirav R. Shah M.D., M.P.H. “Thankfully there is an inexpensive vaccine to protect horses, but their handlers should also take appropriate precautions to protect themselves from mosquito bites.”

Horsepersons working at New York racetracks, where large concentrations of horses are stabled, should especially heed the recommendation to have horses vaccinated and take necessary precautions to reduce the risk of EEE or WNV. The New York State Gaming Commission’s on-track staff is monitoring facility conditions and working with track management to reduce mosquito-infested areas.

“An additional ounce of prevention goes a long way to protecting equine athletes,” said Robert Williams, Acting Executive Director of the New York State Gaming Commission. “We will continue to partner with our colleagues at the Department of Agriculture and Markets and track operators to make sure that horses are kept in the safest environment possible.”

Humans cannot become infected by handling or being exposed to an infected horse. Horses cannot spread either virus to or from other horses, people or pets.  From a veterinary perspective, mosquitoes transmit both diseases from birds to horses.

Typical symptoms of EEE in equines include staggering, circling, depression, loss of appetite and sometimes fever and blindness. Clinical signs of WNV in horses include lethargy, weakness in the hind quarters, stumbling, lack of awareness, head tilt and head twitching, convulsions, circling, partial paralysis and coma. 

Horses exhibiting neurologic signs like those listed above need to be promptly reported by veterinarians to the State Department of Agriculture and Markets’ Division of Animal Industry at (518) 457-3502, in addition to the local health department. 

Horses suffering from neurologic problems must always be handled with extreme caution, since they may be unpredictable and there is also the possibility that Rabies may be the cause.

Vaccines are available to drastically reduce the incidence of EEE and WNV in horses.

If you have any questions about your horses vaccination status please call the clinic at 585-243-5560

Now Offering Digital/E-Coggins Testing!

We are now offering digital coggins for our clients horses.  Digital or e-coggins utilize digital photos of your horse from the front and both sides, in addition to written descriptions.  This decreases the difficulties of matching "non-artistic" drawings to your horses actual markings.  We will also be able to save photos from one year to the next, provided there are no changes to your horse's identifying marks (new scars, dark grey to flea bitten, appaloosa's markings changing as they age), which will streamline coggins testing even more!

We are now also able to e-mail your coggins to you for printing at your convience if you prefer rather than traditionally mailing a hard copy.  This will also decrease the need for frantic faxes when coggins are misplaced during shipping or showing, as we can always e-mail a copy, without searching and scanning.

There is no additional charge for digital coggins, and if you prefer a hard copy of your coggins, we can easily print out and mail a copy to you.

We are very excited about offering this service, and would love to answer any questions you may have about it!

4H Goat Ultrasound Demonstration

 Saturday 3/2/2013 Dr Dewar will be ultrasounding some dairy does for a 4H Goat Ultrasound Demonstration! Please call the office  at 585 243-5560 for more information if your 4H'er is interested in attending!