Equine Influenza

Equine influenza is a highly infectious respiratory virus, which although rarely fatal can cause fever, nasal discharge and coughing. Horses can take several months to recover afterwards. We encourage all of our clients to vaccinate against equine influenza.

To ensure a horse is fully covered against equine influenza you need to check that they have had a primary course of three vaccinations and thereafter a yearly booster. The vaccination protocol is as follows:

  • First vaccination
  • Second vaccination 21-92 days later (approx four weeks after the first vaccination)
  • Third vaccination 150-215 days later (approx five months after the second vaccine)
  • Thereafter annually (within 365 days of third vaccine).

Equine influenza vaccination is a requirement of many competitive organisations e.g. British Showjumping, British Eventing, Showing, Jockey Club, Endurance Riding. Also it is a requirement at local levels e.g. area Pony Club and Riding Club competitions. Many livery yards and riding establishments require it as well.

The FEI Veterinary Regulations require that all horses are vaccinated against equine influenza within SIX months of competing at an FEI event, having had the necessary primary course of vaccinations. This primarily involves international competitions, but may affect some British Eventing and British Showjumping competitions. Please check with your competition governing body.


Tetanus (lockjaw) is a life threatening bacterial infection that can enter your horse’s blood stream via any wound. It is caused by bacterial spores found in soil. It is an extremely painful and distressing disease and treatment is rarely successful. Due to the high number of horses vaccinated against Tetanus we rarely see it these days, however any unvaccinated horse is at risk.

Vaccination can be done separately or combined with the influenza vaccination. After a primary course, boosters are only required every other year.