What is a Coggin’s test, and why do I need to get one for my horse?
New horse owners ask about Coggin’s testing frequently, and not having one when you need it is a real headache. The test checks for antibodies to a particular virus, the Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA) virus. It is named for it’s inventor, Dr. Leroy Coggins. The test is regulated by the federal government, can only be drawn by a licensed and accredited veterinarian, and must be run in a federally accredited laboratory.
There are several important reasons to get an EIA test on your horse.
- Interstate Travel. Most states require a negative EIA test within 12 months of entry to their state. Usually a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (a “Health Certificate”) is also required, and additional requirements vary from state to state. We have current information on travel to all states as well as foreign countries.
- Purchase of a new horse. Our recommendation is that you get a new EIA test run when you buy a new horse, prior to concluding the purchase. The federal government has specific regulations for managing positive horses, none of which you want to be involved with. In addition, all infected horses eventually die from the virus, which likely makes the purchase a poor decision.
- For Medical Diagnosis. Horses that are depressed, anemic, running a fever that doesn’t resolve, or have other specific signs suggestive of EIA infection will have an EIA test run for diagnostic purposes.
Where do you run the EIA test, and how long does it take?
Our laboratory is federally accredited to run EIA tests, and has been for a number of years. It is the only local laboratory in Elbert County. We routinely run the tests several days a week, and results usually take only a few days. In cases of an emergency (“I forgot that I needed a new one and I’m leaving this afternoon is the usual emergency!”) we can get while you wait results for you at an additional expense.
This is what an EIA test report looks like.
Our lab uses Globalvetlink for reporting. The report comes to you via email as a PDF which you can open and print whenever you like.