Second West Nile Case Reported in Washington County

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A horse on Old Mill Creek Road has become the second reported case of West Nile Virus in Washington County.

Dr. Bruce Buenger of the Washington Animal Clinic said yesterday that a second case of the virus in the county was confirmed, just west of Brenham.

The mosquito borne West Nile virus has hit Washington County.

A human case was reported in Washington County in August.

Dr. Buenger said that horses can be vaccinated for the virus.

Texas has seen an explosion of West Nile Virus this year.

The Texas Department of State Health Services reported that, as of Monday, the state has confirmed 1406 cases of West Nile.

The disease has been blamed for 62 deaths, compared to only two last year.

Most of the confirmed cases has been in north Texas, particularly Dallas County with 325 and Tarrant County with 239.

West Nile Virus is mosquito borne and up to 80 percent of the people infected with it show no symptoms and recover on their own. The disease however, can be fatal to people who have weakened immune systems.

Health officials urge people to use insect repellent, dress in long sleeves and pants if they are going outside, staying indoors at dusk and dawn, and drain any standing water where mosquitoes breed, such as old ties, flower pots and clogged rain gutters.

Health officials are uncertain why the Texas outbreak has been so severe this year.