The Tennessee state veterinarian’s office is investigating an outbreak of Equine Piroplasmosis (EP) in a group of racing Quarter Horses in Middle Tennessee.

Twenty-two horses have tested positive for EP in five locations within Bedford, Rutherford, and Williamson Counties. The horses are all under quarantine and being treated.

EP is a blood parasite that affects equines. The disease is not contagious to humans. 

It may take as long as 30 days for an infected horse to test positive for the disease after exposure. Early clinical signs can range from weakness and lack of appetite to swelling of limbs and labored breathing. Horses that survive the acute phase continue to carry the parasite for an extended period of time. Horses that test positive for the disease are quarantined and may be euthanized.

Horses will not transmit the disease to other horses through casual contact.