Unless you have been living under a rock, you have probably heard about West Nile Virus and know it is a threat to your horse. How, then, do you protect your horse from this and other mosquito borne illnesses? By reducing mosquitoes around your stable, helping your horse avoid the ones that remain, and vaccinating your horse against the illnesses common in your area.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, there are four types of encephalitis that strike horses in the United States and Canada. These are: 1)Eastern Equine Encephalitis, 2)Western Equine Encephalitis, 3)Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis, and 4)West Nile Virus. All four strains have similar symptoms. Most horses that contract them have a mild flu-like illness. Some horses have fever, headache, and a sore throat. The most severely affected horses have a sudden fever and headache followed by convulsions, coma, and even death. According to the Texas Animal Health Commission, even horses that survive the severe version of these illnesses are usually brain damaged and unfit to ride.
Because all of these diseases are viruses, there is no treatment for them. Supportive care, such as fluids, rest, support when the horse cannot stand, and love are the only options currently available. This makes prevention of prime importance.
Prevention can be broken down into three areas: reducing the source, avoiding the source, and vaccination. Since these diseases are spread by mosquitoes, it is important to make sure there is no where for the mosquito to breed around your horse. Without water, there can be no mosquitoes. Empty all containers holding water except for the water your horse drinks. Wash out water troughs or buckets on a weekly basis. Mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis, can be added to your horse's trough to eat the mosquito larvae if they are legal in your location. Mosquito dunks, which contain Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis, can be put in water troughs or buckets to kill the mosquito larvae without hurting your horse.
All of the common mosquito borne illnesses, but especially West Nile Virus, normally live in birds. Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis lives in chipmunks or squirrels, but it is rarely found in the United States so far. Mosquitoes only bite horses when their primary host is not available when they need a meal. For that reason, discourage birds, especially crows and grackles, from nesting near your stable.. For some reasons, crows are especially susceptible to West Nile Virus and mosquitoes that bite them can spread it to your horse. Do not allow rodents such as squirrels or chipmunks to feed on the grain that the horse wastes. Try to keep wild animals and birds at a distance from your horse's living quarters.
Avoidance consists of keeping the horse in the stable at night, dawn, and dusk, when the mosquitoes are most active. All windows and doors that are open should have screens to keep the mosquitoes out of the stable. Outdoor lighting should be far enough from the stable that it does not attract mosquitoes. Finally, the use of repellants designed for horses is important. Do not use repellants designed for humans, as these may make your horse ill.
There are vaccinations for all of the equine encephalitis strains found in the United States and Canada. For West Nile Virus, two doses are given thirty days apart. The vaccination program should start approximately 3-6 weeks before the start of the mosquito season in your location. There are two vaccinations available. West Nile Innovator, made by Fort Dodge, has been shown in the lab to be 95% effective. It consists of killed components of the virus that trick the horse's immune system into producing antibodies against the virus. Recombitek Equine West Nile Virus Vaccine is a modified live virus vaccine. It uses the canary pox virus to carry proteins from the West Nile Virus and that causes the horse's immune system to make antibodies. Each year, the horse should be given a booster of the same kind of vaccine the horse originally received to make sure it stays healthy.
Vaccinations for Eastern, Western, and Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis are given in a similar fashion to the West Nile Virus vaccine. Your veterinarian will tell you which types of encephalitis are prevalent in your area and will administer the vaccinations for that type. Two vaccinations are required for each virus the first year, but there are products that contain vaccinations for all three of these encephalitis viruses. Consult your veterinarian to make sure your horse is properly vaccinated.
Follow the principles of reducing mosquitoes, avoiding mosquitoes, and vaccinating your horse to prevent mosquito borne illnesses. Such illnesses can prove deadly, making prevention essential.
Parvovirus is an extremely contagious virus that affects dogs and causes severe diarrhea, vomiting and dehydration. Many dogs don't recover from this aggressive virus and can succumb to dehydration. Young puppies and elderly dogs are at highest risk of dying from parvovirus and early detection and treatment are crucial if a dog is to survive. Prevention is better than the cure and a regular vaccination program should prevent your dog from contracting the virus.
Puppies should be vaccinated at the age of six weeks. If the mother has been vaccinated she can transfer some protection to her puppies through her milk but they are still susceptible to the disease and care should be taken not to expose them to the virus. Reputable breeders usually do not sell their puppies until they are 8 weeks old and if you're buying a puppy from a breeder you should enquire to see when the puppy was vaccinated in order to determine when the next booster shot is due.
Puppies require booster shots of the parvovirus vaccine every four weeks until they are 16 to 20 weeks old. Until then, the puppy is vulnerable to the virus and extra care must be taken to prevent any exposure to sick dogs or any discharge from a dog that has parvovirus.
Care should be taken to keep the puppy away from other dogs and places where dogs may have eliminated. The virus can be carried on clothes and shoes so be careful not to allow your dog to sniff your clothes if you've been in contact with a sick dog.
Even with proper precautions your dog may contract the disease due to the highly contagious nature of the virus. Recognizing the symptoms and taking your dog to the vet without delay can give your dog the best possible chance of recovering from the disease.
The first noticeable signs are vomiting and diarrhea. Although vomiting and diarrhea are symptoms common with many dog ailments, parvovirus causes stool to have a specific smell. There will also be blood in the stool and the vomiting will become constant as the dog is unable to hold any food or liquids. The dog will appear lethargic and feverish and there will be a marked loss of appetite.
If your dog displays any of these symptoms it is vital that you consult your vet immediately as parvovirus can lead to death rapidly.
Treatment for this condition consists of supportive care and your dog will usually be hospitalized for a week and given intravenous fluids and antibiotics. Once the dog has been treated it can still transmit the virus to other dogs so you should keep the dog at home for several weeks to avoid affecting others.
Parvovirus is a very serious disease and should not be taken lightly. The only want to protect your dog from this deadly virus is to maintain a diligent vaccination schedule and keep up with booster shots as per your veterinarians' recommendation.
Genital herpes prevention starts with you. I will cover preventative methods as will as give you a brief over view of how the virus is contracted
Genital herpes, or herpes simplex virus type two is contracted through direct skin-to-skin contact with another individual who is infected with the disease. This is the only way that genital herpes can be passed from one individual to another. The herpes simplex virus type two lives in tiny molecules in the skin and mucous membranes. To infect another individual, the herpes simplex virus travels through small and sometimes microscopic abrasions in the skin or in the mucous membranes located in the mouth or genital areas from the infected individual to the non-infected. While the possibility of an exchange of the disease cannot be protected against 100%, there are certain steps that can be taken to help prevent the transmission of the disease.
Genital Herpes Prevention
The use of condoms during sexual intercourse can offer a modest amount of protection against the transmission of herpes simplex virus type two for both males and females.
Studies show that those who use condoms consistently have a 30% lower risk of contracting the herpes simplex type two virus than those who never use condoms during intercourse. The virus is not capable of passing through the latex material that condoms are made of.
However, condoms cannot be 100% effective because they do not prevent contact between all areas of an infected individual's skin and a non-infected individual. The skin around the infected individual's scrotum, anus, buttocks or upper thighs can also transmit the disease.
Further precautions to protect oneself from coming in contact with other areas of the infected individual's skin during sexual intercourse can be taken.
For example, wearing clothing or undergarments such as underwear in the boxer short style can help to shield susceptible areas but allow access to the genitals through a small opening. This type of precaution can be effective in helping to prevent transmission of the infection but is of course, not 100% reliable.
Furthermore, the use of condoms or other forms of protection such as dental dams can help to limit the transmission of the herpes simplex type two virus from the genitals of the infected individual to the mouth of another. Some antiviral medications, such as Valacidovir along with a condom or dental dam can be used during oral sex to further help decrease the possibility of transmission of the virus from one infected partner to a non-infected partner.
Condom use has been shown to reduce the risk of transmission by about 50 %, although it has also been shown that condom use is much more effective in preventing transmission of the disease from males to females, than from females to males.
Genital Herpes Prevention From Mother To Child
Genital Herpes simplex type two can also be transmitted from infected mothers to their infants during childbirth. This risk is increased greatly if the mother becomes infected with genital herpes around the time of the child's birth.
If recently infected, the risk for transmission of the disease during delivery can be as high as 30-60%. This risk decreases greatly to 1-3% if the genital herpes infection is recurrent and if there are no cold sore outbreaks or lesions at the time of birth.
The risk of transmission from mother to infant can further be prevented if the mother abstains from sexual intercourse with an infected individual during her last trimester of pregnancy. Mothers who are infected with genital herpes simplex type two should also try to avoid any birthing procedures they could cause lacerations or trauma to the infant during delivery.
There are no guaranteed genital herpes prevention methods but, by following the precautions listed above, one can greatly reduce their risk of contracting genital herpes simplex virus two.
We continue to be inundated with information about the flu season and the H1N1 swine flu virus. We all ask ourselves the question, should I get the H1N1 flu shot? Is this virus more dangerous than the seasonal flu? Who are the people at risk and even dying from the disease? What is in the inoculation? These are very important questions to ask yourself. You need to provide the answers given here to your customers visiting your business internet money online opportunity web site.
Here are three questions and answers to consider before being vaccinated or panicking about the H1N1 swine flu.
- Is the H1N1 swine flu a strong virus and worse than the seasonal flu? No. In the vast majority of cases, both viruses are mild enough where the people are able to recover without hospitalization or medication. Both the seasonal and swine flu produce identical symptoms. This includes a fever exceeding 100 degrees, coughing, runny nose and/or sore throat, joint aches, headaches, vomiting and/or diarrhea, lethargy and lack of appetite. You need to be aware that we all get sick and in this flu season be sure and provide the truth to you customers at your website for your business internet money online opportunity.
- Is it true only those people with severely compromised immune systems are dying or are susceptible to serious harm from either the seasonal flu or the swine flu? The answer to this question is obvious. The flu does not kill those in good health, it kills those whose immune systems have lost their ability to protect. Those children who have died from H1N1 are those with a pre-existing disease. It has been shown that Vitamin D is a main protector against the flu and many diseases. Children or people with a Vitamin D deficiency are at risk. The CDC reports that 36,000 people die annually from the flu but this statistic does not tell you that nearly 34,000 of these cases also had pneumonia caused from other complications and actually die from that. Thus the actual figures are that out of hundreds of millions of people only about 1,800 actually die from the flu and we are not sure if they die from the seasonal or H1N1. Again, report the facts on your business internet money online opportunity web site.
- Are the ingredients in the swine flu inoculation dangerous? Here is a list of some of the ingredients so you can decide.
- Squalene - an adjuvant, causes severe immune responses and is linked to auto-immune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, lupus, ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) and Gulf War Syndrome
- Thimerosal - mercury, linked to neurological disorders such as autism, the 25mcg within 1 vaccine is 250 times greater than the EPA's level that is considered safe. We are told not to eat more than 1 serving of fish per week due to mercury yet injecting a large amount into the blood stream is supposedly healthy?
- Aluminum -- a neurotoxin linked to Alzheimer's disease - Triton X-100 -- a detergent - Phenol (carbolic acid) - Ethylene glycol (antifreeze) - Betapropiolactone - a disinfectant - Nonoxynol - used to kill or stop growth of STDs - Octoxinol 9 - a spermicide - Sodium phosphate
So will you put yourself and family at risk by taking the H1N1 swine flu shot and possibly even get the flu as has been the case in Canada or stay healthy and take precautions to avoid getting it? This is your decision but in either case be sure and tell the facts to your customers at your business internet money online opportunity web site.
Canine Coronavirus is a highly contagious virus that invades and replicates in the small intestine. The resulting symptoms are generally not too severe except if the dog is already infected with the Parvo virus. Together Corona and Parvo are synergistic producing exaggerated symptoms and possibly leading to death.
Corona is typically spread by fecal material. The virus can stay in the environment for months so transmission is fairly easy. Like many of the canine viruses multi-dog environments such as kennels, shelters and dog parks pose a higher risk. Also, puppies are more vulnerable than adult dogs.
The most prevalent symptom is watery diarrhea which tends to be more yellowish and foul smelling. Other symptoms include fever, loss of appetite, vomiting and depression.
There's no cure for Coronavirus. Treatment varies with the severity of the symptoms. With diarrhea you always want to be very cautious about dehydration. If the dog does get dehydrated, subcutaneous or IV fluids are needed to protect him from organ damage and going into shock.
Antibiotics are sometimes used to prevent opportunistic secondary infections. And some medications and dietary changes can be used to help with severe diarrhea and/or vomiting. The disease generally runs it's course within 10 days.
Since the virus can be anywhere dogs congregate and since puppies with less developed immune systems are more vulnerable, prevention for puppies includes avoiding these places and any contact with stray dogs.
There is a vaccination for Coronavirus. It's fairly effective but there are multiple strains of Corona so it's possible to be vaccinated and not be immune to all strains. You want to talk to your Vet to determine the prevalence of the virus in your area. As well you want to assess the risk relative to your individual situation.
What is Hepatitis C Virus?
Hepatitis C Virus is a virus that can damage the liver. Unlike hepatitis A and B there is no vaccine to protect against hepatitis c.
How could I get Hepatitis C?
Hepatitis C is carried in the blood. The virus is mainly spread through contact with the blood of a person who has Hepatitis C. You can't catch it through everyday contact such as holding hands, kissing and hugging, or through sharing toilets, plates and cups and kitchen utensils.
Hepatitis C is passed in the following ways.
By sharing equipment for injecting drugs, even if you only did this once or twice or a long time ago. Needles and syringes are the highest risk, but other drug injecting equipment such as spoons filters and water could also carry the infection if they are contaminated with blood from some one who has the infection. Through a blood transfusion before 1991, or blood products like clotting agents before 1986. All blood in the UK is now screened for hepatitis c.
Hepatitis C can be passed on in the following ways
From a mother with hepatitis C virus to her baby before or during the birth. Through unprotected sex with some one who has the virus. By having a tattoo an ear piercing a body piercing or acupuncture with equipment that is not sterile. During medical and dental treatment abroad in countries where hep c virus is common and equipment is not properly sterilised. By sharing razors or toothbrushes which have bee contaminated with blood from someone who has the virus.
SEE YOUR DOCTOR OR NURSE IF YOU THINK YOU COULD HAVE COME IN TO CONTACT WITH THE VIRUS IN ANY OF THESE WAYS
What are the symptoms?
Most people who have the Hepatitis C virus have no signs or symptoms at all for many years. But even if you have no symptoms at all for many years you can still pass the virus on.
How might the virus effect me in the long term?
Around one in four people who become infected with hepatitis c will get rid of the virus naturally. However, most people who become infected will have it for a very log time. This may effect them in many different ways: Some will stay well throughout life and about one in five may develop severe liver damage after many years. Cirrhosis can lead to liver cancer or liver failure.
Where can I get a test?
Your doctor will be able to test you for Hepatitis C.
What if the test result is negative?
This probably means you have never been in contact with the Hepatitis C virus. However, it can take up to 3 months for your body to react to the virus, so the test may not be positive if you have been exposed to the virus recently. Your doctor may advise another test at a later date.
What if the test result is positive?
The result will tell if you have bee infected with the virus in the past. I t will not tell if you still have the virus, you may need another test to find this out, you may then need to see a liver specialist.
Is Hepatitis C treatment available?
New treatments are becoming available. A form of drug therapy that cures half the people treated includes a weekly injection of a interferon drug called Pegasys and oral capsules taken daily called ribavirin. New drugs Telaprevir and a similar one called Broceprevir are being offered to patients who have previouly had treatment and had not responded. Both these new drugs are taken along with Pegasys and Ribavirin making it a 3 fold drug combination therapy. Your specialist will discuss the best form of treatment with you.
What can I do to help myself if I am positive for the virus?
If you have the virus stop drinking alcohol, this is the single most important thing you can do to reduce further damage to your liver.
How do people avoid becoming infected or if they have the virus passing it on?
Don't inject drugs. Never share drug injecting equipment. If you are considering having piercings, tattoos or acupuncture make sure all the equipment such as needles and ink pots are fully sterilised. If you or you partner have the virus there is a small risk it could be passed on during sex. Condoms reduce this risk. Do not share razors or toothbrushes as they could have blood on them.
"My cat keeps sneezing. How serious is it?" At first you thought it was no big deal. But you know that chronic sneezing might be a sign of a serious more condition, just as in humans. You hate seeing your pet suffer, and hate cleaning up all the mucous and snot! But what you really want to know is, "Is my cat's chronic sneezing a sign of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)?"
Usually, when you are thinking, "my cat keeps sneezing", some local environmental effect is the culprit. He stuck his nose somewhere that got some dust, dander or other irritant lodged in his nostrils. He may just sneeze out the irritant. But sometimes this can cause his sinus tissues to become damaged. These tender tissues are raw and very susceptible to disease and bacteria. They can lead to more serious afflictions, like FIV, which can be deadly if not treated promptly.
Let's look at some common symptoms of FIV.
Chronic sneezing and nasal dischargeFever and fatigueRed and wet eyesChronic diarrheaSkin and hair lossExcessive urination and thirstOvereating
As you can see, FIV is a disease that can manifest itself in many forms. This is because once the immune system is weak, any number of afflictions and bacteria can invade! The key to combating your cat's excessive sneezing, whether it is a sign of FIV or merely an upper respiratory congestion, is to boost your beloved pet's immune system immediately to fight bacteria and disease.
Wild cats eat leaves and herbs when they begin to feel a negative change in their body's many internal systems. They know the answer lies in natural minerals. Your cat is no different. Natural, herbal, homeopathic remedies to combat upper respiratory issues like chronic sneezing, coughing and weepy eyes provide an overall immune boost. This boost in their immunity system improves overall resistance to all afflictions and ailments!
Did you know that 2% to 3% of all healthy cats have FIV? It is laying in wait for your pet's immune system to weaken. Then it allows some affliction to strike. The upside is that every cat that is diagnosed with FIV early usually lives a full healthy life through the application of regular treatment. And if your cat's sneezing is simply a minor upper respiratory infection, this same natural homeopathic cure will alleviate his sneezing also.
Provide your pet with an overall immune system boost, ward off FIV, and stop her cold and flu like symptoms with a safe, fast-acting, natural cure. Then you will never have to say, "My cat keeps sneezing. How serious is it?"