West Nile Virus Release

On August 20th, the HCGHD was aware of a case of West Nile Virus (WNV) in a horse located in Baltic.  It is important to protect yourself and your animals from mosquito bites.  Mosquitos can transmit diseases such as the West Nile Virus, Zika Virus, and La Crosse virus. The best way to prevent mosquito-borne diseases is to prevent mosquito bites from happening. To prevent mosquito bites:
• Use EPA- registered insect repellants when outdoors
• When weather permits, wear long sleeves, pants, and socks when outdoors
• Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitos outside
• Reduce mosquito breeding around your home by emptying standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, scrap tires, birdbaths, and pool covers

Horses are especially prone to severe West Nile Virus infections; however it is important to remember that people cannot get West Nile from another person or horse that has the disease. To protect your horses from West Nile Virus:
• Talk to your vet about vaccination – it is the best way to protect your horse from getting WNV
• House horses indoors at dusk and dawn
• Avoid turning on lights inside stables at night as mosquitos are attracted to light
• Remove birds, including chickens, that are close to the stable
• Eliminate areas of standing water
• Topical preparations that contain mosquito repellant are available for horses. Be sure to read the label before use
• Use fans on the horses while in the stable to deter mosquitos

If you have any questions regarding mosquito-borne diseases, please contact the Holmes County Health Department at 330-674-5035 or info@holmeshealth.org