Christine's story

It started with a new mare being brought onto the yard with a view to being sold on a few days later. When the prospective purchasers arrived with their vet, he said he suspected strangles, the mare was slightly off her food and on examination had a swelling in her throat.

Our vet was called out and the diagosis was confirmed, and the yard was put into quarantine. the owner of the mare, myself and one other owner were the only people to come into the yard over the next six weeks,

Food and hay was delivered to the yard gate and had to be carried, pushed up the drive way.

Immediately diagnosis was confirmed all the other horses on the yard including my three were tested and proved negative. Strict rules were put in place, everyone coming and leaving the yard had to go through disenfectant. All the other horses were fed, mucked out, and turned out, before the mare was attented to. All feed buckets, stable equipment used for the mare were kept seperate from the other buckets and equipment, and all horses feed buckets were washed after each feed and kept to each individual horse. Once the others had been turned out, I would then go in and see to the Ella, giving her food, and looking after the wound once it had erupted. Her stable was washed out with Virkon twice daily, and all bedding/ left over hay burnt, away from the other horses.

Once I had finished looking after the sick horse, I immediately washed my hands, took off the paper overalls and burnt them, and left the yard without any contact with the other horses.

I think it was about six weeks before we got the all clear on the yard, and during this time we contained the infection to just Ella, all horses were tested to ensure that they were not carriers post outbreak.

You can feel very isolated during this time, but it is the only way to ensure that his horrible disease does not spread.