An animal health company has developed an alert system to notify registered users about reports of equine disease throughout the country. The hope is to build a greater awareness of those diseases and the importance of prevention.
Merial launched its Outbreak Alert program June 1 to give information about any potential outbreaks of diseases such as eastern equine encephalitis, equine monocytic ehrilichiosis (Potomac horse fever), equine influenza, rabies, tetanus, western equine encephalitis, and West Nile virus.
Horse owners and veterinarians can sign up for free alerts via the program's website, www.outbreak-alert.com. When a disease report occurs, those who have signed up for the notification and live within a 250-mile radius of the reported outbreak will receive a text or email message to alert them of the potential disease threat.
Owners who travel with their horses and want to stay abreast of disease threats in other parts of the country can enter multiple ZIP codes in the site's search field. They will then be able to receive alerts for all areas they have selected.
The website also provides access to consumer-focused information about equine diseases, their transmission, signs to look for, and disease prevention, including the importance of vaccination.