Sensitive Public Situation..... How would you handle????


It's All About Chicken Math
12 Years
Apr 29, 2007
I am President of our Local Saddle Club. Hubby is VP . This Club was Dormant for a few years and we have worked our behinds off to get it back up. With the economy it has been a struggle, but we have a solid Class Sheet and are having great attendance.

This year we decided to give Points so competitors could try for Year End Awards, this up coming show I have done something a bit different as well, the show net weekend is right before our 4H Kids go to the big State 4H Show, we decided to do daily High Point Trophies and I have a Reserve Champion and Champion especially for the 4H Kids.

With that said, we have a member, she buys and sells A LOT of horses through her place, I have recently found out that these horses are hauled in from out West. With the current outbreak of the EH1V Virus out there, I think it is wise, on my part to ask her not to attend our show. I have no knowledge she has the virus at her place, but I think in the situation, it is my duty to protect my faithful competitors from something that could happen .

Let me back step a bit, for history. This particular member has not attended any of our shows this year, even though we put particular classes in the Running section for them as they requested. This particular member also put two shows of her own on, first one was April 30, same day as our second show, the second one was yesterday.

Our Show was supposed to be yesterday, but because of Graduations and Holiday weekend, we decided at the last show to change it as we wanted our competitors to be able to be with us.

Ok, so, I need to send this particular member an email, I need to politely ask her to not attend the June 4th show. I am sure she will get angry and a good friend of mine is also friends with her and I am sure I will get an earful. I am not sure quite how to approach the subject. I want her to understand that we certainly would love to have her attend, but because of the fact she gets horses in almost every week from out west that it is not a wise thing.......
Does this person attend the shows for selling horses? or for fun? I would be blunt, polite and professional. Maybe tell her that ANYONE with the disease is not allowed. It is unfair to the other members to risk the chance at getting the disease especially from someone who's focus is more about selling horses than fun. Horse traders do transmit diseases more than recreational owners. I would be ticked off if you let her in knowing the risks you stated. You may send a copy of the letter to all the members also.
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do you know with certainty that other horses that will attend the show have not come into contact with horses from the west, other infected areas/farms or infected horses? I would guess that the answer is "no" so singling out this one person seems rash. I am not familiar with the EH1V virus, but if it is like other illnesses (lag period between infection and expression of symptoms), it seems like anyone that attends these shows would do so at their own risk.
If someone is concerned about their horses contracting the virus then the safest thing for them to do would to be to just stay home and maintain their animals in quarantine. Same thing applies to chicken shows.
It's getting bad around here. The equine supply stores are not taking returns on anything that actually could touch a horse. So pretty much everything horse related. Lot of cancelled shows.

Sounds like a good decision. Is it just out in the west? Vets around here are quarantining horses that they have on hand and not allowing new horses in. Just give it to her straight. If she has one infected horse from out here then the whole herd is at risk. They say they can't tell till the horse starts showing symptoms.

All my info is second hand from my DW. She has been following it since she has quite a few friends with horses. We are horseless finally so we're not worried ourselves. it will make it's way East eventually. I'm surprised they're allowing transport there.
That is a very tough situation....but people that are attending the shows are still knowingly taking a risk being there. Their horse may have already come into contact with some of hers or others from out west.....I know that if you do request her to not will be blown out of proportion and she will not take it laying down.....probably slander and everything else in between..especially if she is a popular person. Something similar happened near us....a lady's horse came up with coggins. ..and everyone freaked out and banned her from their barns.they banned her from their she called the animal control on everyone and tried to have their horses taken from them..supposedly starvation. I think that if this lady has her own shows and knows that many people.....trouble is lingering.
Is there a way to test for that disease?? Maybe she can get tested before the show??
So far, and I just had this conversation with my vet today, there are no cases here in the South. Since this persons horses are known to come from some of the stats where cases have been reported, I feel that it is my duty as President to try to protect the other competitors. Our competitors are local, they all live , pretty much within less than 50 miles of where the shows are held.

This person, brings different horses to the shows all the time and her "personal" horses are in contact with all the other horses in the pastures. A couple years ago, she got a horse in that had strangles (it was already healing) but her entire place was quarantined because several horses contracted it.

I am surprised as well that transport is still allowed, but apparently it is or has been recently (last week) this is confirmed as this person called a good friend of mine to see if she knew of someone interested in a certain horse she just got in, she told my friend that she could bring this horse to her barn to broker. My friend politely declined . My friend did ask her where the horse came from and she mentioned the name of the person she has been getting horses from for a couple of years. It is a known fact that all of his horses are purchased out West. There may be some restrictions on hauling in, if not now I am sure there will be soon. But this guy is not particularly the most honest person, so I am sure he would find some way around it

Yes, our regular competitors have not attended any shows that would draw the type of competitor that would come from that far away, as I mentioned most of them are local 4H kids from our county and the next county over, we also have some POA people that show with us, we go show at their shows in the next county as well. I am comfortable in saying that I am sure the normal competitors are fine.
This is so new, there is not test and no vaccine. I have just vaccinated all of mine again, I usually do 2 times a year, but after confirming with my vet I am doing 3 this year. I have mares and babies here that are worth some $$ plus my stallion and gelding. I have mares in early pregnancy so needed to confirm that it would be ok to vaccinate with Rhino this early on my mares.
Well i would say... "I mentioned that i was having a show on June 4th to my vet.... and he asked about any horses attending that could have come in contact with horses from out west etc..etc...and i was wondering if you still get horses from out west?"

Just blame it on the vets advice!!....
I would want the actual statistics on infection. Just because the media covers it, doesn't mean it is honestly something to be severely worried about. Just becuase stores decide not to take anything back..doesn't mean their fears are justified. I personally would want to know what the chances truly are, before continuing.

Case in have a 100 times more chance of getting beat to death by your own husband or wife than one of your children being harmed by a stranger. But do we fear our mates enough to not be around them? Of course not..but we certainly do fear strangers when the truth is..most times any type of abuse is from a family member or friend.

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