Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1) infection in horses can cause respiratory disease, abortion in
mares, neonatal foal death, and/or neurologic disease. The neurologic form of EHV-1 is called
Equine Herpes Virus Myeloencephalopathy (EHM). While EHV-1 and EHM are only officially
listed as reportable diseases in some states, private veterinary practitioners are encouraged to
notify their State Animal Health Officials of any suspected or confirmed cases, regardless of
current official state reporting requirements.

Cases of EHV-1 and EHM have been identified recently in horses that attended the National
Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Western National Championship event in Ogden, Utah held
from April 29 to May 8, 2011. The NCHA has notified State Animal Health Officials of horses
from their states that were entered in the event and may have been exposed to the virus. State
Animal Health Officials have contacted the owners of potentially exposed horses. Standardized
recommendations were developed by state and federal officials and are being followed to isolate
exposed horses, monitor them for clinical signs of EHV-1, and work with private veterinary
practitioners to test and treat horses affected with the disease. Biosecurity procedures have been
recommended for premises with suspect and confirmed cases to mitigate further disease spread.

Read or download the report here:
Equine Herpes Virus
Definitions for This Report
Exposed Horses: Horses that attended the Ogden, Utah event from April 29 to May 8 and horses
that subsequently came into contact with horses that attended the Ogden, Utah event (secondarily
Exposed Premises: Premises with exposed horses.
Suspect EHV-1 case: A horse exposed to EHV-1 that develops fever (rectal temperature above
101.5 oF), but has no neurologic signs at this time.
Confirmed EHV-1 case: A suspect EHV-1 case with laboratory confirmation of EHV-1
infection, but has no neurologic signs at this time.
Suspect EHM case: A horse exposed to EHV-1 that develops neurologic signs. (Posterior
incoordination, weakness, recumbency with inability to rise, and/or bladder atony are most
commonly seen in EHM cases.)
Confirmed EHM case: A suspect EHM case with laboratory confirmation of EHV-1 infection.

Summary Information on Current Situation
• Owners of horses known to have been exposed in this incident have been contacted by
State Animal Health Officials.
• Suspect and confirmed cases are reported to be under voluntary or state quarantine.
• Known exposed horses are reported to be under either voluntary or state quarantine.
• A total of 33 confirmed EHV-1 or EHM cases have been reported in 8 states (CA, CO,
• Of the 33 confirmed EHV/EHM cases, 32 cases are horses that were at the Ogden, Utah
• There are 7 horses associated with this incident that are dead or have been euthanized.

Tips for Winter Feeding of Your Horses  
  • Feed more hay..........  substitute two pounds of hay for every pound of grain you decrease in the horse’s daily ration to keep your horse warmer
  • Encourage water consumption by offering warm water, or use insulated or heated buckets to keep water at a higher temperature (ideal water temperature is 45 to 65º F), to reduce incidence of impaction colic
  • Add salt, mineral supplement or electrolytes to the feed to increase water consumption and reduce impaction colic risk
  • Turn the horse out as much as possible, or provide adequate exercise to aid gut motility and prevent colic
  • Feed hay off the ground or position the hay net below the horse’s head to aid in nasal and lung drainage and lessen incidence of respiratory problems
  • Use a weight tape every 30-60 days to gauge your horses body condition
One of the many items we look for in evaluating an equestrian property before certifying in "Horse Safe" is the available vegetation and foliage.

A recent article by Sue Perry; "Did He Eat Something Poisonous?" in the Horseman's Yankee Pedlar outlined many of the common plants that pose a threat to horses.

Among those outlined were:
  • Red Maple
  • Cherry leaves
  • Japanese Yew
  • Cowbane (Water Hemlock or Cicuta virosa)
  • Rhododendron
  • Alsike Clover
  • Acorns - Seldom a problem if other food is available, because horses seem to not like the taste.
They noted that these can cause symptoms like Colic, Laminitis Photo-sensitivity and others.

The article was short and informative but in the limited space allotted they did not delve into more information.

One of the items not mentioned in the story is probably one of the most common grass types found in North America. Tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea) is the most important cool season grass in the United States. It provides the primary ground cover on some 35 million acres. Discovered In 1931 Dr E.N. Fergus of the University of Kentucky. It was introduced to the public as Kentucky 31, in the 1940's and 1950's it was extremely popular and was introduced to provide forage in areas where other grasses simply did not do well.

The problems with Fescue were later discovered and varied from foot ailments to weight loss, increase heart rate, increases in body temperature and lack of milk production in livestock who fed on Fescue; A fungus or (Fescue Endophyte) was found to be the culprit.

Since this discovery numerous studies have been done evaluating the threat potential of Fescue, it is widely understood that pregnant or nursing mares and young foals should not eat Fescue because of the potential for Fescue Toxicosis in Horses!

Another toxic plant not mentioned was White Snakeroot (Ageratina altissima) a highly toxic herb found mostly in Eastern North America.

While this information is important it is not a complete list of known hazards to horses.
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The New York State Department of Agriculture’s Division of Animal Industry has implemented The New York State Horse Health Assurance Program (NYSHHAP) . The NYSHHAP, a voluntary certification program, is designed to promote and to teach a pro-active approach (or “an ounce of prevention” theory) to equine health, care, and welfare through the use of certain “best management practices” or standards.

The program addresses equine health and equine facility management issues.
The farm must be in 100% compliance with these basic equine management standards to be certified and once certified must pass an annual inspection to maintain their enrollment in the program.

The Standards and Certification Manual is provided free to anyone requesting a copy as well as an Addendum of Sample Guidelines which provides written protocols for implementing some of the standards.

Certification Process: The certification process involves the evaluation of each equine operation against the standards outlined in the Standards and Certification Manual. Steps to certification include the following:

  1. Request the Standards and Certification Manual from the NYSHHAP Coordinator: Contact Dr. Lyda W. Denney  at lyda.denney@agmkt.state.ny.us or call 315-430-2529
  2. Complete  the "Certification Self Study" form included in the manual on page 45; submit to NYSHHAP Coordinator: Dr. Lyda W. Denney, PO Box 809, Vernon, NY  13476
  3. The operation will be contacted by the NYSHHAP Coordinator to schedule a certification visit with the NYSHHAP Coordinator; the same standards are used at this visit that were evaluated in the Certification Self Study step by the operation
  4. Receive certification acknowledging the achievement at the time of the operation visit
The program differs from IEREP's Horse-Safe© program in that it addresses the health of the individual horse as well as the safety and design of the facility. Where IEREP's Horse-Safe© program only address the construction, design and safety of the facility where the horses are held and any property the horses have access to.

As Equestrian Real Estate Professionals we are focusing on the real estate and the facility not the animals housed in that facility. New York's program is a great idea as long as it remains voluntary, but as we all know; government usually seeks to force mandates once it has its foot in the door.

 The program also requires micro-chipping your horses, a practice that offers some hope for horse theft prevention. With this they also provide the farm with signage noting that animals on the premises are electronically identified.

Certified farms are required to undergo annual inspections to maintain their certification; they are listed on the New York Department of Agriculture and Markets website. While the program does include some examination of the property, it's primary focus is more on the management practices, health practices and horse care.

The program was established in 2002 and was featured in an article in Equss Magazine in 2005 (see file below); and now has certified over 75 facilities including several New York City Mounted Police Units.

It is our belief that the certification will be an asset to our certified Equestrian Real Estate Professionals in helping them market and sell equine property in the state of New York, and it will go hand in hand with our Horse-Safe© certification process.
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Thank you so much all of you who have asked to become part of our organization. We are still working with our web designers on a few details and with our staff and adviser's on some educational details.

As these final elements come together we will be moving forward with scheduling our first classes and seminars.

We appreciate your patience and look forward to getting to know all of you much better in the near future.

Dear Member of congress;

As a real estate broker who specializes in equestrian ranches and farms, I can tell you the devastating effect that the horse slaughter ban has had on the value of real estate.

As a horse breeder I can tell you the catastrophic effect the horse slaughter ban has had on the horse industry.

I’ve been to many auctions where the sellers are asked to pay to bring a horse in because they won’t sell and they often leave them at the auction house. I’ve seen many well trained, well bred horses pass through an auction house and not bring a single bid.

I have never sold a horse to slaughter, but by eliminating an entire industry the United States government as put thousands of people out of work. All too often people come to Washington and start drinking from the Potomac and forget that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Those of us out here in the real world are still trying to survive while you take our freedoms and our money!

Horses are being turned loose and abandoned all across the country. The Bureau of Land Management is no longer able to find buyers for the wild horses they take care of and have drastically exceeded there budget. The BLM has even approached congress for permission to kill many of the horses!

The BLM has estimated the rising cost of caring for these animals will climb from $37 billion in 2008 to a staggering $72 billion in 2012. Some are calling for the release of these animals into the wild where they will breed more and add to the problem.

This solution also will result in environmental damage as well as a health and safety risk to humans.

I have spoken with people who work in horse rescue shelters, who tell me they have no room to take anymore horses. A short time ago I tried to get several shelters and to help with a negligent horse owner, his horses were starving and in terrible condition. I called multiple rescues and they all told me they were overwhelmed.

Before the August recess, Senator Sam Brownback offered an amendment to the Senate Agriculture Appropriations bill, which would provide for a Government Accountability Office (GAO) study of the status of horse welfare as it relates to the closing of horse processing plants in the United States. This amendment passed the Senate’s version of the Ag Appropriations bill.

The GAO study would specifically examine issues such as:

1) How the horse industry has responded to the closure of U.S. horse slaughter facilities in terms of both the numbers of horse sales, exports, adoptions, or abandonments
2) The implications these changes have had on farm income and trade; the extent to which horses in the United States are slaughtered for any purpose
3) Any impacts to State and local governments and animal protection organizations;
4) How the USDA oversees the transport of horses destined for slaughter in foreign countries such as Canada and Mexico; and,
5) General conclusions regarding the welfare of horses as a result of a ban on horse slaughter for human consumption.

The Committee language directs the GAO to issue its report by March 1, 2010.

I urge you to support this study and find out exactly the cost of this tragic decision.

A GAO study of the closure of horse processing plants and the effect on horse welfare is widely supported by the horse industry and horse owners. Currently, there is little hard data on this issue.  Such a study could provide valuable information to Congress and the horse industry as it deals with the unwanted horse issue before passing legislation further burdening horse owners and any unfunded mandates on states or local municipalities to enforce new laws.

D. Ben Edsall
Broker – Accredited Equestrian Real Estate Professional
The Institute of Equestrian Real Estate Professionals


As our membership has grown we have struggled to keep up with updates to our site. We are working with our web developers now to design a better search engine for clients looking for Equestrian Realtors®. The new page will have a clickable map that will allow visitors to locate agents by area.

while it looks simple when you see it on other sites, the HTML of it is very tricky. Stay tuned for new updates as we grow larger and larger.

Thanks for visiting The Institute of Equestrian Real Estate!


The Institute of Equestrian Real Estate , Equestrian Experts.com and Equestrian Agents.com have recently become affiliated. This exciting news will help buyers and sellers of equestrian real estate to find truly qualified equestrian agents and real estate professionals to assist them with their transactions.

If you are looking for a Realtor® with experience in horse property, these three sites are your guide to finding that real estate specialist.


Thanks your for visiting the Institute of Equestrian Real Estate Professionals.



IEREP is working with some well known veterinarians to help us put together our next Horse-Safe© course. If you have any suggestions or know of other equestrian service professionals who may be interested in working with IEREP as we continue to develop more courses and training please send us the information.

As more and more members have joined; the need to establish our next course schedule has become more pressing. Please continue to send us your comments and suggestions.

Response has been astounding and often we receive emails stating how glad many are that finally someone has set out to form an organization for equestrian real estate professionals. Many have said they felt ignored by The National Association of Realtors and simply neglected.

I'm sure if you have been in the field very long you will understand their frustration.



IEREP© is the first organization of its kind, an organization dedicated to educating and improving the real estate professionals knowledge and understanding of equestrian real estate. Our organization seeks to build relationships with equestrian real estate agents, brokers and service providers throughout the world.

Offering educational courses, seminars and designations in the field of equestrian real estate. We look foreward to meeting each and every one of our members and building your real estate business as we build relationships, trust and a reputation with the equestrian public. Exemplifying our devotion to the career we have chosen by the ethics we abide by.


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