Hendra Virus

Passed from flying foxes to horses, and then from horses to humans, dogs, and potentially other animals, this virus has caused four human deaths and more than 80 confirmed horse deaths since 1994. Two dogs on quarantined properties have also tested positive to the virus, and were subsequently euthanased in accordance with national biosecurity policy.

The most significant recent development is that a Hendra virus vaccine for horses is now available in Australia, for more information please contact your equine veterinarian. Hendra Info

More info on the vaccine:

Video series: Watch “Hendra Virus – A Safer Tomorrow” on Youtube. First video here.

For the latest updates:

  • “Hendra Virus” page by Biosecurity Qld (Qld Government Department of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry) – information on latest outbreaks, background, research, guidelines for vets, guidelines for holding equestrian activities, horse and donkey biosecurity. Details of who to contact if you suspect Hendra virus in Qld
  • “Hendra Virus” by NSW DPI – background and links to more information. Details of who to contact if you suspect Hendra virus in NSW.
  • Hendra Virus Facebook page –  No-one “likes” Hendra virus, but you can stay up to date on the latest outbreaks, information seminars and vaccine progress by “liking” this Facebook page.

More information on horse and human health, including biosecurity and other practical measures to reduce the risks:

  • “Hendra Virus Infection” on the Queensland Health website – a very thorough page, with information on the disease in both horses and humans, including prevention, transmission and symptoms.
  • “Hendra Virus” by CSIRO – background, scientific information and updates on research progress into the new vaccine for horses.

Information for other states:

More links:

  • “Hendra Facts” website – Quote: “Hendra Virus is a serious issue, but with so much biased reporting and uninformed opinion, it can be hard to get to the facts. The result of this is people being given the wrong advice, and in at least one case, misdiagnosis. This site provides easy to understand explanations without bias, and provides links to authoritative government, scientific and veterinary sources.”
  • “Hendra Virus Info Group” on Facebook – A friendly group for civilised discussion, with members including veterinary professionals, bat carers and interested horse people.
  • “Hendra Awareness” – a concerned horse owner has started this page to share information, to petition for increased funding into research, and to discuss her concerns.
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