Because of serious concerns regarding the recent positive confirmation of the neurologic strain of Equine Herpesvirus at Ruidoso Downs in New Mexico, Prairie Meadows Racetrack in Altoona, IA has changed its EHV-1 policy effective immediately.
Until further notice, no horses will be allowed to enter the stable area of Prairie Meadows Racetrack if they are coming from Ruidoso Downs.
Dr. John Sweeney, State Veterinarian for the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, commented, “Based on the positive confirmation of a case of the neurologic strain of Equine Herpesvirus at Ruidoso Downs, we are taking further steps to protect the equine population at Prairie Meadows.”
The change in policy was the result of discussions over the Ruidoso Downs situation between the racing management of Prairie Meadows, the State Veterinarian, and Iowa Horsemen’s Benevolent And Protective Association executive director Jon Moss.
All horsemen are advised of the existing policies currently in place for every horse shipping into the stable area at Prairie Meadows:
1. The following documentation must be provided for every horse (including pony horses) at the stable gate before they will be permitted to enter the barn area of Prairie Meadows Racetrack.
a. A current health certificate issued within 72 hours prior to arrival at the track which shows the vaccination record for each horse. The horse must have been vaccinated with an FDA approved modified live or killed virus vaccine for EHV-1 not less than 10 days and not more than 60 days prior to date of entry. The veterinarian must provide the date of vaccination, the brand, serial number, and the expiration date of vaccine.
b. The health certificate must also contain a statement by the issuing veterinarian that he/she has physically examined each horse within 72 hours of issuing the health certificate, and
i. the horse does not exhibit any clinical signs of the virus;
ii. the temperature of the horse was normal at the time of the examination
2. It is recommended that horsemen keep every horse admitted to or in the barn area of Prairie Meadows Racetrack on a current 90 day FDA approved EHV-1 vaccine or EHV-1 booster schedule.
All horse haulers are strongly urged to take extreme caution when transporting horses to properly disinfect and sanitize their trailers. All trainers on the grounds are urged to follow recommended bio-security procedures in their barns. Compliance with these policies will be paramount in helping to protect the health and welfare of the equine population stabled at Prairie Meadows.