As of 6 p.m. (Central Time) on Monday May 23, all NCHA-approved shows for the weekend of May 27-29 have been cancelled by the respective affiliates or show producers putting on those events. The NCHA appreciates this proactive move by show producers in a nationwide show of precaution and solidarity to help stop the spread of the contagious and potentially deadly Equine Herpes Virus-1 among horses. Last week, all NCHA shows had been cancelled for the weekend of May 20 -22 as a precautionary move to help stop the spread of the EHV-1 virus.
Additionally, the NCHA Executive Committee, in the best interest of cutting and horse health, has cancelled the June 3 – 5 AQHA/NCHA Weekend at the 25 locations where the events were scheduled across the country. The decision to cancel AQHA/NCHA Weekend was made after consultation and in conjunction with officials from the American Quarter Horse Association, the Title Sponsor for NCHA Weekend. The NCHA Executive Committee will closely monitor the EHV-1 virus for the time period during which no NCHA-approved events will be conducted. In the near future and with full information on both the EHV-1 virus and show schedules around the country, the Executive Committee will look at the possibility and practicality of rescheduling AQHA/NCHA Weekend.
The NCHA continues to closely monitor the situation of reported cases of Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1) that were reportedly first clinically diagnosed in horses that attended the NCHA Western National Championships in Ogden, Utah conducted April 29 – May 8, 2011. The virus can be contagious among horses, but is NOT transmittable to humans. While the NCHA does not want to unnecessarily alarm horse owners, we do want to stress the severity and highly contagious nature of this virus, and be a clearinghouse of factual information so you can make informed decisions on this matter regarding your personal horses and production of NCHA-approved events.
While reported cases of the virus are currently in Western states, the interstate transport of infected horses could cause a much wider spread of the virus if we are not all very cautious at this time.
The NCHA supports the decisions (by affiliates and show producers across the country) to cancel shows that were made in the best interest of horse health. The association also strongly urges horse owners across the country to consider the possible horse health risks of horse-to-horse contact until the virus can be contained. The NCHA knows that many qualified veterinarians are working on this EHV-1 issue, and we trust that during the coming weeks we have additional factual information and clinical diagnosis on the geographic extent (and any possible new case reports) of the virus that will allow us to make the best informed decisions for shows scheduled the weekend of June 10-12.
If you are the owner or trainer of a horse that has exhibited neurological symptoms of EHV-1, had a fever without neurological signs of the virus, or that has died from what you believe to be EHV-1, please contact the NCHA office by calling Pam Robison at 817/244-6188, ext. #111, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org .