I have always been a horse person and to this day, I ask my parents for a horse every Christmas. Do I get one? Well... technically... if you count a plastic one! ;) Eventually, I'll own one! When you have a horse there are many things you have to worry about especially this year in Minnesota.

KTTC claims that there have been THREE rare diseases confirmed in Minnesota this year and they all have one common denominator -- BUGS! According to the article, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health believes the diseases have been spread through mosquitoes and flies. Some owners put protectors around the horse's eyes so they don't have to worry about flies getting into their eyes. There are even bug repellents for these animals, which I don't know much about. The article continues to say that the peak time for horses to contract such disease is summer, which they consider July through September.

The most common disease that was confirmed this summer is West Nile. The article says that the horse just had symptoms of being sick. This is also a disease that humans can contract. The best way to protect yourself against this disease is to wear bug spray when you are outside around standing water.

The next one is a scary disease. My friend's horse got this back in Colorado and they had to put her down right away. It's called Eastern Equine Encephalitis. According to this article, the animal's brain and spinal cord will swell. Most of the time, the animal loses control of all body movements and will eventually have to be put down.

Finally, a case of Equine Infectious Anemia was detected in Minnesota. The article says this is a tricky disease. A horse could carry it their whole life without any detection. Most of the time this comes from fly bites and is transferred from animal to animal.

If you have horses, it's best that you take percussion in the next few weeks to ensure your animal stays healthy. As always, if you have any concerns it's best that you contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.

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