Desert International Horse Park announced that the property has been closed to daily haul-ins and horses from local farms in the area for the duration of the 2023 Desert Circuit in light of recent reports of EHV-1 in California.

Two cases EHV-1 have been reported by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) over the past few days—one in Los Angeles County and one in Riverside County.

“We have been in close communication with the CDFA to ensure that there was no potential for impact from these two cases on our property,” read a press release from DIHP.

“Both cases occurred in horses of different disciplines (polo and saddlebred). Contact tracing suggests no interaction between horses from these two incidents and any horse from our facility.

“These cases are all important reminders to be diligent in our collective biosecurity efforts so we can ensure we maintain a safe environment at the horse park.”

The no-ship in policy will remain in effect through end of day Sunday, March 19, when competition at the Desert Circuit concludes.

Equine Herpes Virus-1 (EHV-1) is a virus that is present in the environment and found in most horses all over the world. Horses are typically exposed to the virus at a young age with no serious side effects. In some cases, EHV-1 can develop into Equine Herpes Myeloencephalopathy (EHM), a potentially fatal neurological disease. EHV-1 is spread by direct horse-to-horse contact. The virus may also be spread indirectly through contact with objects contaminated with the virus, such as clothing, human hands, equipment, tack, trailers, feed, water buckets, and wash rags.

Exhibitors with questions or concerns are invited to contact