Equine flu spreads to Bangalore

December 13, 2008

Equine influenza appears to have reached Bangalore as India battles to contain a major outbreak.

The Times of India reports more than 10 horses suffering from flu-like symptoms at a horse carriage stand in Vyalikaval this week. The affected horses were described as very weak with a hacking cough.

All horses operating from the stand were affected and there were reports of horses at another stand suffering similar symptoms.

A recent report by Indian authorities to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said nearly 18,000 horses have contracted equine influenza and 16 have died.

The outbreak was centred on Jammu and Kashmir, the country's northernmost state.

The outbreak is known to have disrupted the horse racing programme in several areas.

Earlier unofficial estimates had put the number of cases at about 5000.