A quarantine has been lifted at Turf Paradise which prevented horses from leaving or entering the stable area since January 28th.
In cooperation with the track, the Arizona Department of Agriculture declared a 21 day quarantine at the stable area meaning no horses in and no horses out because of the Equine Herpes Virus. That quarantine was lifted today, February 18th.
The virus does not impact humans.
In late January three horses were transported from Sunland Park Race Track in New Mexico to Turf Paradise. When word broke of an outbreak of Equine Herpes Virus at Sunland, Turf immediately had the three horses moved to isolated pens a half a mile from the main stable population of 1700 horses. One of those three horses tested positive and died of the virus. The other two horses show no signs of illness.
No other horses at Turf Paradise have shown symptoms of the virus which poses no risk to humans. In addition, any horses that were housed briefly with the infected New Mexico horse have been tested and do not have the virus.
As part of the quarantine, Turf initiated comprehensive disinfectant protocols facility-wide as an additional measure of protection. Live racing at Turf Paradise continued during the quarantine.
Quick and preemptive measures have paid off as the quarantine was lifted today, February 18th.
As an extra precaution, Turf will not be accepting any horses from Texas or New Mexico.
In addition, any horses being brought to the Turf Paradise stable will be placed in isolation and tested for Equine Herpes, and won’t be admitted until it’s determined they are not infected.
Turf Paradise General Manager Vince Francia stated, “While our protocols have gone beyond what is required, we feel an abundance of caution is the best approach. We thank the horsemen and women for their patience and their efforts during the quarantine and moving forward as we ensure the health and safety of our horses.”
Turf Paradise is Arizona’s first sports franchise, and has operated continuously at the same location at 19th Ave and Bell. It offers one of the longest racing seasons in the United States thanks to Arizona’s great weather. Through Off Track Betting networks its races are viewed at OTB locations all over the United States and worldwide.