Yesterday our horses got their second set of vaccinations. All of Hanaeleh’s horses are vaccinated yearly with strangles, West Nile (unless they have an allergic reaction), and a 4-way shot, which includes both Eastern and Western encephalomyelitis, tetanus, rabies and flu-rhino.
Last week our horses received their West Nile and strangles vaccines. Luckily all of our horses right now are able to receive the West Nile vaccine, as the disease does kill a number of horses in Southern California every year. The strangles virus is highly contagious and horrific to the horses; even if it doesn’t kill the horse, the horse is in quite a bit of pain throughout the ordeal, so it is very important that we both quarantine new horses as well as vaccinate our current horses for the disease. Most of the horses were pretty good for their shots, although we all had to go home and take showers after the clinic to ensure that we did not get strep throat by being inoculated with the strangles virus!
This Thursday the horses received their 4-Way shot. Horses who are neurological should not be given this shot as it can exacerbate the neurological symptoms, and can permanently worsen their condition. That means that neither Ulysses nor Stetson were given the vaccine; luckily they are not in a condition to go off-property, so they should be relatively safe. In addition, as they are older, they both probably have built up an immunity to the flu-rhino virus. Since we just took Austin in, he received his 4-way shot only. We will wait a few weeks before giving him his West Nile and strangles vaccines.
All of the horses were pretty well-behaved, although some were understandably concerned about being poked with a needle. After their vaccines, the horses were given cookies and the afternoon off, and Friday they will receive light work in case they are a little sore from the vaccines.
Rio has been having some stifle issues, so while the vet was out he received injections in both stifles. These will help alleviate some of the arthritis and other stiffness he has been experiencing in his hind end.
Although the horses may not appreciate it, the regular vet visits are all part of how Hanaeleh helps keep the horses safe and healthy year-round.