A horse in Oneida county has tested positive for West Nile Virus. The state reported the positive test this week.
West Nile Virus is a mosquito-borne illness given to people, horses, birds and other animals after a mosquito feeds on infected birds.
Oneida County Community Health Specialist Corie Zelazoski says besides the recent horse infection, a bird was confirmed positive earlier this month. She gives advice for residents and horse owners...
"...this means residents should be vigilant when outside after dusk to be protecting against mosquitoes. Horse owners should be reminded to contact their vets to vaccinate their animals. In addition to vaccination, horse owners can lower risk by keeping their animals inside from dusk until dawn...."
Zelazoski says most people don't get sick from West Nile Virus...
"....the majority of people, 80 percent, infected with West Nile Virus don't get sick. Those who do become ill experience mild symptoms such as fever, muscle ache or fatigue. Less than one percent infected with the virus get seriously ill...."
She recommends residents take standard procedures to protect themselves from breeding more mosquitoes by using a repellant, making sure your residence doesn't have holes in windows or doors, not having standing water, cleaning gutters and keeping grass short. In 2002, the state documented its first human infections and 52 cases were reported that year. In 2016, 13 cases of West Nile virus were reported in Wisconsin.
West Nile virus infections in humans have been reported from June through October; however, most reported becoming ill with West Nile virus in August and September.