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Horse in county tests positive for West Nile

October 05, 2003

A Washington County horse has tested positive for West Nile Virus, a mosquito-borne disease that can be fatal to humans, according to a news release from the Washington County Health Department.

The news release did not say where the horse was housed, and its condition was unknown Friday.

The horse began showing symptoms of the disease on Sept. 25. At the time of testing, the animal was alive but had not been vaccinated against the virus.

It was the 112th horse in Maryland this year to test positive for West Nile Virus, the news release said.

Officials said although the mosquito population has decreased because of colder weather, they still warn residents to take measures to decrease mosquitoes to protect animals and humans from contracting the virus.

Some suggestions include avoiding unnecessary outdoor activities at dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active; using repellents; wearing long pants and long-sleeved shirts; and clearing standing water.

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