In the course of several days most of the 40 riding-school horses turned out in paddocks developed ataxia of variable severity. Five of these horses showed severe ataxia and tremors, became paralyzed and were euthanized. Eleven privately-owned horses which were stabled on the same premises showed no clinical signs. The most likely diagnosis seemed to be the 'neurological form of EHV1', although the signs were not entirely typical. A few weeks later a second outbreak occurred among the riding-school horses and one of the privately-owned horses also showed signs of ataxia. In the meantime it had been shown that EHV1 titers in paired serum samples had not increased and that the cerebrospinal fluid of one of the severely affected horses was normal. Toxicological examination of hay, delivered just before the first outbreak and stored for the winter, showed a significantly increased concentration of lolitrem B mycotoxin (5-6 mg/kg). The hay appeared to have been made of ryegrass used for lawns and playing fields. Retrospectively it became probable that this hay occasionally been fed to the horses just before the onset of clinical problems. It is concluded that the horses showed the 'ryegrass-stagger syndrome'.
|Translated title of the contribution||Rhinopneumonia or mycotoxin intoxication? Neurologic phenomena in horses from a riding school|
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||Tijdschrift voor Diergeneeskunde|
|State||Published - Nov 15 1999|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Veterinary (all)