New Yorkers who own horses are being urged to be sure their animals are properly vaccinated.

State Agriculture Commissioner Darrel Aubertine says horses should be vaccinated against West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis.


Aubertine says parts of New York state have mosquito activity into late November, meaning horses may be at risk for several more weeks.

One West Nile Virus case in a horse has been confirmed in Saratoga County. There also have been cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in St. Lawrence and Westchester counties.

The diseases can kill horses but they can be prevented through vaccinations.

People can't become infected by handling or being exposed to infected horses.

Horses exhibiting signs of staggering, loss of appetite or lethargy could be infected by one of the diseases.

Horses with such potential neurological problems should be reported by veterinarians to the State Department of Agriculture and Markets' Division of Animal Industry.

Horses showing such symptoms should be handled with extreme caution. They should be regarded as unpredictable. There's also a possibility rabies could be causing the behaviorial issues.

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