Learn about Equine Influenza, a contagious respiratory virus similar to the human Flu.
What is Equine Influenza?
Equine Influenza, commonly known as Flu, is a respiratory disease caused by a virus. It is a different strain to the human flu, but the symptoms and transmission are similar. It is highly contagious, with a high risk of disease and possibly death in unvaccinated animals.
Equine Flu can be spread between horses, ponies and donkeys. It takes one to five days before an infected animal starts to show symptoms.
What are the symptoms of Equine Influenza?
- A reduction or loss of appetite that may lead to Hyperlipaemia
- A high temperature that may last for one to three days
- Harsh, dry cough
- Difficult breathing
- Clear, watery nasal discharge that may become thick and yellow or green
- Swelling of the lower limbs.
When should I vaccinate my donkey against Equine Influenza?
Your vet will advise you on when to give the initial course and will help you with booking in boosters.
Foals can start the primary course at around six months of age or, in certain circumstances, from four months.
Flu and Tetanus vaccinations are available as a combined product, so your vet may be able to give your donkey one injection to cover both diseases.