AAEP guidelines for Barns during the COVID outbreak

March 2020 – American Association of Equine Practitioners

Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in Equestrian Facilities Facility Personnel:

• Restrict access to a boarding facility to essential personnel (veterinarians, farriers, equine caretakers, trainers, and essential owners).

• Prohibit non-essential persons (students, friends, family members) from entering the facility.

• Stay 6 feet apart from other people and do not congregate.

• Do not allow access to the facility to anyone who has been exposed a person with symptoms of COVID-19 (cough, shortness of breath, or fever) or if the person wanting access is showing any symptoms of COVID-19. View the CDC’s guidance on COVID-19 symptoms here.

• Limit crosstie use to every other crosstie.

• Use an online sign-up form to encourage horse owners to commit to an hour that they will be riding or visiting the barn, and limit each time slot to ensure that no more than 10 people are on the grounds at a time.

Facility Environment:

• Please do not touch anything unless you need to use it.

• Avoid sharing equipment and supplies between persons.

• The virus can persist on non-porous materials (leather bridles/saddles/halters, nylon halters/lead ropes, gate latches, door handles, spray nozzles) longer than porous materials (cotton lead ropes, saddle pads).

• Clean communal leather tack daily with tack cleaner

• Disinfect gate latches, spray nozzles, cross tie snaps, pitchforks, wheelbarrows, and other frequently used non-porous surfaces regularly or after contact with

• Stall door handles, hose ends, light switches, and feed scoops are handled by
many people and should also be cleaned and disinfected frequently.

• Only designated individuals (trainers/staff) are to move and set jumps or other arena equipment.

• Prohibit the shared use of grooming supplies, helmets, and tack as these may be sources of environmental transmission of COVID-19 to other humans.

• Although there is no evidence that horses can contract or become ill from COVID-19, practice good hygiene by washing your hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds or using a >60% alcohol hand sanitizer after touching a horse, communal areas, or communal equipment to prevent environmental spread of the virus. Hand sanitizer is not as effective as soap and water, so only use when there is no soap and water available and hands are not visibly soiled.

Additional Online Resources:
• CDC COVID-19 Disinfection Guidelines
• Approved Disinfectants for Tougher Surfaces (Not for Leather)
• Equine Coronavirus Fact Sheet from Equine Disease Communication Center

Developed March 2020 by the AAEP Infectious Disease Committee.


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