An outbreak of a contagious and dangerous neurological virus in horses has prompted Queen Creek to close Horseshoe Park & Equestrian Centre, including the community arena, through June 2.
Known as EHV-1, the virus can be fatal to horses, but does not impact humans. It has been found in Arizona and in other Southwestern states. There is no vaccine for EHV-1, although it may be treated if caught in the early stages.
There have been no reports of infection at Horseshoe Park or within Queen Creek, but according to a statement the town is closing the park to protect the community from any potential outbreak.
The virus is passed from infected horses via the respiratory tract or through contact with tack, grooming equipment, feed or water buckets that have come into contact with an infected horse. The air around an infected horse can also be contaminated with the virus. Horses may appear to be perfectly healthy yet spread the virus via the secretions from their nostrils.