Horse diagnosed with Hendra virus near Tweed Heads

CALLS to vaccinate horses against Hendra virus have intensified after a positive diagnosis was reported near Tweed Heads.

WARNING: Horse owners are encouraged to vaccinate their horses from Hendra virus. Photo: Michelle Smith.

WARNING: Horse owners are encouraged to vaccinate their horses from Hendra virus. Photo: Michelle Smith.

The unvaccinated four-year-old Arab cross horse, diagnosed with the disease has been euthanised.

Australian Veterinary Association spokesperson, Dr Ben Poole said it was critical to vaccinate horses living in high risk areas.

“This latest death is an unfortunate reminder of an unnecessary death of another horse, highlighting that the Hendra virus can occur at any time of the year and is not predictable,” he said.

“That is why vaccination is so important, because a vaccinated horse has an extremely low risk of having Hendra virus infection.”

“Vaccination is the only way to ensure high standards of horse health and welfare whilst also reducing the risk to veterinarians, horse handlers and owners.”

Horse owners are encouraged to contact a veterinarian for more information about Hendra virus vaccination.