Strangles is a common threat
The disease causes major economic losses to the equine industry worldwide due to its contagious nature, prolonged course and associated serious complications. Yards can be closed down for considerable periods of time whilst dealing with an outbreak and cleaning up afterwards. According to International Collating Centre, strangles is responsible for 30% of infectious disease episodes.
Reliable UK statistics are not available as the disease is not notifiable in this country. However data from the Animal Health Trust suggests that the disease is on the increase. In reality these figures are likely to underestimate the occurrence of strangles as many cases will go unofficially diagnosed and many ‘mild cases’ will be dismissed as ‘The Virus’ or as a ‘dust allergy’.