Pigeon Fever in Florida's Horses (VM185)

A quarterhorse at the UF/IFAS horse teaching unit in Gainesville FL.For the first time in recent history, Florida is seeing a large number of cases of pigeon fever in horses. As of June 2012, the state is reporting over 60 suspected equine cases in Okaloosa, Walton, and Marion counties. The majority of cases have been confined to the Panhandle. Pigeon fever is caused by Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis, which is a gram-positive, rod-shaped bacteria. Horses with the most common form of pigeon fever will develop external abscesses. This 2-page fact sheet was written by Amanda M. House, and published by the UF Department of Veterinary Medicine-Large Animal Clinical Sciences, August 2012.