Strangles: How to Protect Your Horse

Protecting your horse
Protecting your horse

Biosecurity protocols such as observation and screening of newly arriving horses help to prevent the spread of disease. However, vaccination is the best way to combat strangles.

Biosecurity and vaccination as horse protection

Biosecurity and vaccination as horse protection

Because strangles is classified as a risk-based disease, Dr. Hankins recommends vaccinating your horse if your horse is exposed to unfamiliar horses or travels where strangles is a persistent problem.

Pinnacle® I.N. is the only two-dose, modified-live bacterial vaccine developed to help prevent strangles. Given intranasally, the vaccine helps provide a more natural immune response, stimulating innate and mucosal immunity at the site of natural infection. Additionally, it avoids local injection-site reactions that can occur with parenteral S. equi vaccines. 2

Because strangles is classified as a risk-based disease, Dr. Hankins recommends vaccinating your horse against this costly disease if:

  • Your horse travels or is frequently exposed to unfamiliar horses at shows or in a boarding barn
  • Your horse is traveling to a location where strangles is a persistent problem
  • Your horse is exposed to high pasture stocking densities (two or more horses per acre)
  • Your horse is susceptible due to lack of prior vaccination or natural exposure

If your horse meets any of these risk criteria, vaccination with Pinnacle I.N. is recommended. Speak with your veterinarian about your horse’s disease risk and the benefits of vaccination.

About Zoetis
Zoetis is the leading animal health company, dedicated to supporting its customers and their businesses. Building on more than 60 years of experience in animal health, Zoetis discovers, develops, manufactures and markets veterinary vaccines and medicines, complemented by diagnostic products, genetic tests, biodevices and a range of services. Zoetis serves veterinarians, livestock producers and people who raise and care for farm and companion animals with sales of its products in more than 100 countries. In 2016, the company generated annual revenue of $4.9 billion with approximately 9,000 employees. For more information, visit

1 American Association of Equine Practitioners. Strangles (Streptococcus equi). 2008. Accessed August 7, 2017.

2 Sweeney CR, Timoney JF, Newton, JR, Hines MT. Streptococcus equi infections in horses: Guidelines for treatment, control, and prevention of strangles. J Vet Intern Med. 2005;19:123-134.

About the Author

Flossie Sellers

As an animal lover since childhood, Flossie was delighted when Mark, the CEO and developer of EquiMed asked her to join his team of contributors.

She enrolled in My Horse University at Michigan State and completed a number of courses in everything related to horse health, nutrition, diseases and conditions, medications, hoof and dental care, barn safety, and first aid.

Staying  up-to-date on the latest developments in horse care and equine health is now a habit, and she enjoys sharing a wealth of information with horse owners everywhere..