- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 31, 2016

MADISON, Minn. (AP) - A 2-month-old filly in northern Wisconsin has been euthanized after becoming infected with Eastern equine encephalitis.

The unvaccinated filly from Forest County is the first reported horse in Wisconsin to become infected with the mosquito-borne disease this year. The filly was euthanized on Aug. 23.

Julie McGwin, equine program veterinarian for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, says northern Wisconsin has good mosquito habitat. McGwin says the wet summer up north contributes to the problem.

The disease is caused by a virus transmitted by mosquitoes, and may cause encephalitis, or inflammation of the brain. The illness is fatal to horses in 90 percent of cases.

The virus is not contagious between horses, but can be carried by mosquitoes from a bird host to horses and humans.

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