Two Marquette County horses infected with mosquito-borne disease

MARQUETTE COUNTY — According to the Marquette County Health Department, two horses in Marquette County have tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) infections. EEE is a serious viral disease transmitted by mosquitoes which can cause neurological disease in horses and illness in people, poultry and other animals.

The sick animals are an indication that infected mosquitoes may be present in the region. People should take steps to prevent mosquito bites by applying repellent and wearing protective clothing, as well as control mosquito populations on one’s property.

There is no vaccination available to protect humans from contracting EEE, but there is one for horses. Horse owners should contact their veterinarian to make sure their animals are up-to-date on all vaccinations.

While EEE is not uncommon in the Upper Peninsula, a horse from Menominee County tested positive in 2016. That same year, one human case of EEE was also diagnosed.

Six horses in the state of Michigan have tested positive so far this year. The additional four cases are in lower Michigan.