November 2018: “Back on Track” Vaccine Amnesty




It is estimated that only 40% – 50%1 of UK horses are currently vaccinated – meaning all horses are at risk as 70% of a population needs to be vaccinated to prevent epidemics of equine influenza occurring.

Westover vets are pleased to be taking part in the Equine Flu Awareness Campaign, in conjunction with Merial Animal Health, The Animal Health Trust and the HBLB, offering a vaccination amnesty to ALL horses over 12months of age, who have either never been vaccinated or whose vaccinations have become overdue.

The ‘BACK ON TRACK’ Vaccination Amnesty offers the second dose of vaccine FREE when given as part of a primary course for customers of Westover Vets.

About Equine Influenza                                                                                                                                                                  

Equine flu is an infectious disease affecting the upper respiratory tract of horses. It is prevalent in the UK with frequent outbreaks recorded over the last few years.1

A horse with flu needs complete rest and isolation, often putting them out of action for weeks. In addition to this, outbreaks can affect competitions at all levels potentially resulting in the cancellation of events in order to control the spread of disease.

Clinical signs usually appear within 1–5 days of exposure to the flu virus and can last for 3–6 weeks. They can include a high temperature, cough, nasal discharge, enlarged glands under the lower jaw, conjunctivitis, depression, loss of appetite and filling of the lower limbs.

If your horse shows any of these clinical signs consult your vet immediately, even if your horse has been vaccinated. This will allow appropriate tests to be carried out to determine the cause and ensure that a suitable treatment plan is put in place. Remember to keep the horse isolated from others during this time as flu is highly infectious.

The equine flu virus evolves and changes constantly and it is important that its development is monitored in order to ensure vaccines protect against the circulating strains. Recent outbreaks in the UK are known to be of a strain called Florida Clade 2 (a sublineage of H3N8)2.  Current guidelines from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) recommend that vaccines should contain both Clade 1 and Clade 2 strains of the Florida sublineage3.

Please contact us on (01603 899930) to book your horse into the ‘BACK ON TRACK’ vaccine amnesty.


For more information on equine flu visit:


This information has been brought to you by Merial, the manufacturers of ProteqFlu® vaccines


  1. National gfk data (2014)
  2. Available at: (Accessed January 2016). 2. OIE Expert Surveillance
  3. Panel on Equine Influenza Vaccine Composition – conclusions and recommendations (March 2015). Available at: ttp:// (Accessed January 2016)