All states have some type of Coggins test requirements in place. This regulatory testing for equine infectious anemia is considered an essential part of protecting the state’s horse population and agricultural vibrancy. Some states have mandated that horses which enter or travel through their state must have a negative Coggins test result from a blood sample drawn either within the last 12 months or within the last 6 months, depending on the state.
State-by-State Coggins Test Requirements
Looking for a state-by-state directory of Coggins test requirements? It’s a little dated, but Cannon Veterinary Services has compiled and published this chart of EIA state regulations. You can also find some additional about rabies, vaccinations, and other permits that may be required by particular states. As far as we know this information is still accurate, but we haven’t confirmed with each and every state recently. (If anybody knows of more current state-by-state information for Coggins testing, please write to us and let us know where you found it.)
For horse owners, the easiest and best way to determine your state’s Coggins test requirements is to talk to your equine veterinarian. This information is second nature for most veterinarians, like recalling their own phone number or email address.
For veterinarians who are looking to make queries about recent changes or ambiguities in the requirements for Coggins testing and interstate equine travel, the USAHA maintains an updated document of contact information for each state’s animal health department.
State-by-State Risk of Equine Infectious Anemia
Equine infectious anemia is rare, but outbreaks do occur as the virus can be transmitted through horseflies, deerflies, and other biting insects. While no state is immune from equine infectious anemia, southeastern states with more tropical and humid climates tend to be at slightly higher risk overall. In 2018, Texas was hardest hit, followed closely by Georgia. It doesn’t affect the requirement for Coggins testing. However, if you’re interested in viewing state-by-state historical data on the disease, the USDA publishes state-by-state distribution maps for equine infectious anemia for each year dating back to 2001.
Traveling with a Horse
More than Coggins testing, if you’re planning on attending an equestrian event or other sensitive areas, you may need a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection. In most states, these CVIs must be issued within the last 30 days, or in some cases even the last 10 days. While something of a “silent” killer with many infected horses being asymptomatic, equine infectious anemia isn’t the only health concern. For horses and horse owners with frequent travel plans, a digital equine passport is a handy way to document Coggins testing, CVIs, and other required documentation without fear of losing the paperwork. (This passport should work in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia. However, some states may still not recognize this document.)
Keep in mind, too, that Coggins testing is required for more than just interstate travel or equestrian events. If you’re selling or buying a horse in most every state, a Coggins test must be conducted before the sale is completed. Some states also require documentation for certain types of intrastate travel. Done as much for ownership as animal health, many western states require a brand inspection when moving horses more than 75 miles, for example.