Infectious diseases in horses

Influenza (flu), strangles or rhinopneumonia are unfortunately 3 common infectious diseases in the Netherlands. An outbreak of one of these 3 causes is often accompanied by a lot of unquiet, both in the stable and on social media.
In the future, the Netherlands may also have to deal with newly emerging infectious diseases (think of the West Nile virus).

Below you will find more information about how we can help horse and stable owners manage and prevent these (and other) infectious diseases.


Do you have strangles, influenza or rhinopneumonia in the stable? That is annoying but our advice is not to look for a responsible person (which horse or which person brought it in?). The disease is already in the stable, and in the case of rhinopneumonia, it can even be a re-activation of the virus in a horse that has not left the yard!

The goals of management in the acute phase are:

  • make a correct diagnosis and support/treat the sick horses
  • limiting further spread of the disease within the stable
  • preventing the spread of the disease outside the stable

The goals of management in the later phase are:

  • monitoring the disease within the stable
  • safely opening the stable again for horses and people from outside.

Both phases also include communication of correct information within (protocols, information meeting) and outside the stable (informing neighborhood stables and reporting on social media).

We can help horse and stable owners, as well as veterinarians, at any of these stages.


Experiencing an outbreak causes a lot of stress, usually takes a lot of time and money, and the stable usually gets an unfairly bad image. This infectious disease is no innocent for horses either. The majority of horses survive the disease, but they can suffer from it for a long time, and in some cases end up with permanent disorders.

That’s why prevention is so important, with the aim of:

  • the prevention of an outbreak: think of vaccination strategies, isolation of the new entrants and hygiene in the stable
  • limiting an outbreak when a causative agent is in the stable

Each stable is different in the number of horses and visitors, in the composition of the horses (trade, competition, breeding) and in the organization of the buildings. That is why prevention of outbreaks is tailor-made. We are happy to help you develop strategies that suit your situation.

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Does your horse suffer from an infectious disease, contact using the form below.


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