Third Florida Horse Tests Positive for CEM

The horse lives in Orange County and is connected to two previous cases.
A third horse in Orange County, Florida, has tested positive for contagious equine metritis (CEM).
A third horse in Orange County, Florida, has tested positive for contagious equine metritis (CEM). | Adobe Stock

A third horse in Orange County, Florida, recently tested positive for contagious equine metritis (CEM). The horse is connected to two previous cases—a pony mare and stallion—reported within the past month.

EDCC Health Watch is an Equine Network marketing program that utilizes information from the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC) to create and disseminate verified equine disease reports. The EDCC is an independent nonprofit organization that is supported by industry donations in order to provide open access to infectious disease information.

About Contagious Equine Metritis

Contagious equine metritis (CEM) is a venereal disease of horses caused by the bacteria Taylorella equigenitalis. It can impact fertility in both mares and stallions. The United States is considered to be CEM-free. Therefore, CEM is a foreign animal disease that is reportable at both the federal and state level. The U.S. horse industry could suffer significant economic losses if the disease became established here.

CEM is spread during breeding or through contact with contaminated objects. It is highly contagious among horses and can be difficult to detect and control. Signs of illness in infected mares may not be obvious, and stallions carry the bacteria without showing any signs at all. In some cases, mares may also become carriers. Foals born to infected/carrier mares can also become long-term carriers of the bacteria.

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