A full service mixed animal practice
Tanglefoot Veterinary Services Ltd. is a full service mixed animal practice offering a full spectrum of preventative, surgical and medical care.
Owned and operated by Dr. Uli Helvoigt, Tanglefoot Veterinary Services has been offering care for our 4-legged friends in Cranbrook and surrounding area since 2009. In 2010, we welcomed the addition of Dr. Denise Peebles, who has been a great addition to the care of companion animals. More recently, Dr. Joanna Kouwenberg joined our veterinarian staff roster.
West Nile Virus…Is It Really Here
I’m sure many of you (as we are) have been watching closely for updates on the spread of West Nile Virus in the area. So far we have seen confirmation of positive West Nile infection in Castlegar, Creston and just across the border in Bonners Ferry. There have been 10 confirmed cases in Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho. We have a sample that we have submitted from a local horse and are impatiently waiting for those results.
On September 3rd we finally got results and the local horse (Elko area) tested positive to the virus.
West Nile Virus is transmitted to horses via mosquitos and can be prevented by a highly effective vaccine easily obtained at your veterinarian. Controlling the mosquito population in your area will also help minimize the risk of transmission. West Nile Virus is NOT transmitted from HORSE to HORSE or from HORSE to HUMAN.
Symptoms of WNV include fever, ataxia (incoordination), stumbling, hind limb weakness, depression, anorexia, inability to rise, muscle tremors, teeth grinding, dysphagia (inability to swallow), head pressing, signs of colic, a flaccid (limp) paralysis of the lower lip, aimless wandering, excessive sweating, behavior changes, and convulsions or even coma. Of the horses that show symptoms of West Nile Virus encephalitis about 2 out of 3 survive. Treatment usually consist of supportive care and some may have lasting neurological deficits.
Many horse owners in the East Kootenays have chosen not to vaccinate their horses for WNV due to the cost of the vaccine and the lack of cases in recent years. However, in light of the recent occurences, we are strongly recommending ALL horses be vaccinated against the disease. Please call the clinic or stop by if you have questions regarding your horse’s vaccine status. If you require several doses of the West Nile vaccine please call the clinic ASAP at 250-489-1655 so we can order vaccine and determine how many doses are required.