Published April 5, 2020
Equine practitioners are incredibly diverse in what services they deliver, how they deliver them, the resources they have available to do so, and roles their patients play, including use for pleasure, racing, other performance, work, and therapy.
The One Health aspects of COVID-19 draw attention to the need to balance animal health with human health, considerations that veterinarians take into account daily. Entering a facility where a COVID-19 positive individual resides or works, or interacting with an individual known to be ill with COVID-19, should occur only in ways consistent with guidance from the CDC, state, and local public health officials. Equine practitioners should be very familiar with CDC’s Interim Guidance for Public Health Professionals Managing People With COVID-19 in Home Care and Isolation Who Have Pets or Other Animals and have access to appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) before making such a decision.
The AVMA shares the following considerations with equine veterinarians during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although little is known about SARS-CoV-2 in domestic animals, it appears that horses owned by COVID-19 patients are unlikely to transmit SARS-CoV-2 to humans. The recommendations that follow are based on proven techniques applied in many different disease outbreaks and are consistent with the Hierarchy of Controls (listed from most effective to least effective).