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190 horses quarantined at The Meadows after virus outbreak, racing suspended

Renatta Signorini
| Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, 10:12 a.m.
The Meadows Racetrack & Casino in North Strabane is starting an effort to attract more gamblers.
Stephanie Strasburg | Tribune-Review
The Meadows Racetrack & Casino in North Strabane is starting an effort to attract more gamblers.

Horse racing at The Meadows Racetrack & Casino has been suspended through Feb. 6 after three more horses were diagnosed with a contagious virus, according to the state Department of Agriculture.

Five barns of 190 horses at the Washington County facility now are under quarantine by state veterinarians after an initial outbreak was reported Wednesday, officials said in a news release. An initial quarantine then was limited to two barns of 60 horses after one horse was diagnosed with equine herpes virus, or EHV-1, a mild respiratory illness. That horse is responding well to treatment, according to the release.

Racing options will be re-evaluated next week, officials said. Horses are not permitted to come into or leave the racetrack. Three horses in the quarantined barns that had elevated temperatures are being monitored.

Symptoms include fever, nasal discharge, lethargy and neurological issues, according to a fact sheet from the Equine Disease Communication Center.

The virus can be spread through the air, via humans or on contaminated surfaces, the fact sheet states. It does not pose a threat to people or non-equine animals.

Unless a new case is detected, all horses can be cleared after 28 days without symptoms or 21 days with confirmation of negative test results for the virus.

Renatta Signorini is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-837-5374, rsignorini@tribweb.com or via Twitter @byrenatta.

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