What Is The Coggins Test?
The Coggins test is for equine infectious anemia (EIA), a horrible and contagious disease.
It is a disease that has no cure nor vaccine.
A popular name for the Coggins disease is swamp fever. An estimated death percentage rate of horses that has the disease ranges from anywhere between 30-70%.
• Perhaps you are aware of the Coggins test. However, it is beyond a blood test. It is a required method toward preventing a horrible disease without a cure from spreading to other horses.
The Coggins test detects antibodies against equine infectious anemia (EIA). There is also no vaccine, so it is better to prevent your horse from having a positive coggin.
• Flies and other biting insects spread the virus that causes the EIA. Flies bite one horse, then they move on to the next.
The virus only lives with the insect for less than an hour, so horse-to-horse transmission mainly occurs with horses in close proximity.
• ·Other symptoms of the EIA include; Fever, Anemia, bloating, storage, weight loss, and muscle atrophy(wasting). Ultimately, these can lead to organ damage and secondary infections, and eventually, death.
The Three Stages Of EIA –
• Chronic and
The Acute cases are often vague, with fever, depression, and poor appetite. This is similar to many other diseases, and a Coggins test will only test positive after six weeks.
Within a month, most acute cases of EIA will die off.
Chronic EIA typically leads to severe fever and weight loss and minor bleeding from the mucous membranes. Chronic horses can have acute episodes that frequently come and go in quick successions.
They will be positive since the expected useful life is approximately one year.
Horses with Chronic EIA will test positive as the estimated lifespan is around a year.
An additional symptom of Chronic EIA in horses include Leg and underside swelling.
Carrier horses are mostly asymptomatic. They carry the diseases for life and easily transmit it to other horses.
You probably won’t see any signs, but the test will be positive.
What Do You Do as a Horse Owner to Prevent EIA?
You must monitor your horse’s overall health status on a daily. Also, ensure you take your horse’s temperature every day.
You should also be smart about the environment you bring your horses to.
Shows, new boarding facilities, and even group trail rides are places where a horse could become infected.
Some programs (not all) require a negative Coggins test within six months or one year.
Some shipping barns also do this.
· You should also be aware of the regulations on a Coggins test if you take your horse across state lines.
· There is no cure, and the options for a horse with positive Coggins are tragic. Euthanasia is often the solution.
What Happens If A Horse Has Positive Coggins?
In some areas, you may be able to have your horse quarantined for life, requiring it to be tagged and move no closer than 200 yards to another horse.
This option is devastating to any creature that is, by nature, a herd animal.