Contagious Equine Metritis

Contagious Equine Metritis
Disease Name:
Contagious Equine Metritis
Species Affected:
About the Disease:
Contagious equine metritis is a highly communicable venereally transmitted bacterial disease of
horses. This disease can spread rapidly from a single asymptomatic carrier, particularly a
stallion. The disease is usually results in temporary infertility. It is a nonsystemic infection, the
effects of which are restricted to the reproductive tract of the mare. Infected horses do not
become ill or die, but reproductively is severely reduced. Mares develop acute metritis and fail to
conceive, resulting in substantial economic losses. This disease is an OIE Reportable Disease
as in the Disease Category 4.
Animals Affected:
Contagious equine metritis is caused by Taylorella equigenitalis, a gram negative bacteria.
Horses appear to be the only natural hosts for T. equigenitalis and are transmitted mainly during
mating. The infection with this organism is highly contagious.
Source of infection:
Infected or carrier animals i.e. mares and stallions are the source of infection of the disease.
Stallions are the most common source of the infection because they mate with numerous mares
and play an important role in spreading the organism. It can also be spread by infected semen
during artificial insemination or introduced to the genital tract on fomites. In untreated stallions,
T. equigenitalis can persist for months or years on the reproductive tract. Mares can carry the
organism asymptomatically after they recover from acute disease.
Infected stallions display no clinical signs. Signs in mares appear ten to fourteen days after
breeding to an infected or carrier stallion.
1. Endometritis,
2. Cervicitis and
3. Vaginitis
4. Mucopurulent vaginal discharge
5. Temporary infertility
Control and Management:
1. Prevention of natural mating or Artificial Insemination with infected horses (stallions or
mares) or use of infected stallion semen and strict control of breeding.
2. Any horse testing positive will be required to remain under official breeding and
movement restrictions indefinitely.
3. Good Stable hygiene is always recommended.
4. Always exercise strict hygiene measures when handling mares, stallions and teasers.
Effective vaccine are not yet available.
Meteorological Occurrence:
Its geographic distribution is difficult to estimate accurately.
Prepared by:
Dr. Peter N
JRF, NADRS, Manipur.
Disease Investigatory Laboratory
Directorate of Veterinary, & A.H. Services,