Every few years they make me go to the small animal vet for a fun field trip to get vaccines. I like car rides and meeting new people so I go along with it. There is a moment of discomfort when they stick the needles in me. I get treats. I forgive for the needles since there were treats, and back to the clinic I go. Horses are different. Of course they are! They feel the need to be special about all kinds of crazy stuff. Horses have to get vaccines WAY more often, like twice yearly more often.
Why are horses so special? First: they are getting vaccinated for a different type of infection than most of the vaccines your dog or cat gets. Eastern Encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV) in particular are very bad about overwhelming the immune system unless it is super primed and ready. Also most horses are exposed to EEE and WNV on a VERY regular basis when they get bit by mosquitoes. This means they better be ready to fight all the time! Second: horses just aren’t good at responding to vaccines. We all know cats are a superior critter, and I see this as further proof. Really awesome Docs have done pretty detailed research to show that horses only have a good response for 6-14 months depending on the vaccine. Cats respond so well that we only have to get shots every 3 years. Yep, we’re awesome like that.
Another reason horses need vaccines more often: their busy social lives. While us cats are busy keeping to ourselves being the good loners we are, horses are off at horse shows and trail rides and clinics and sleepovers. Sure, it all sounds like fun, but it’s also an opportunity to get germs from others. Horse shows have caught on to this germ festival. The United States Equestrian Foundation (USEF) recently passed a rule stating that horses have to be vaccinated every six months for Rhinopneumonitis and Influenza. I’m not one for rules but I hear from our Docs that this one is reasonable. Lots of horse shows were making their own rules about when and how and why and blah, blah, blah on vaccines. This means there is one rule to govern them all. (What?! This cat likes Lord of the Rings) So, if you show any breed or discipline that is under the USEF umbrella you must have proof of vaccination. This includes Paso Fino, Arabian, Dressage, Hunter/Jumper, and Eventing, just to name a few.
I must, also, be sure you know about our Wellness Program. This simple program will take care of all your horse’s health needs and you don’t have to worry about any of it! How awesome is that? Our Docs think of everything. You have 5 days left to sign up for Wellness 2016. Don’t miss out on this program!
So once again we have proven cats rule and you should call Springhill Equine. I feel redundant when I say these things. Our Docs can help you determine what vaccines your horses really need, when they need them, and provide the documentation you need for all that socializing.