Before hauling your horse it is prudent to be aware of state and federal transportation requirements.
Briefly stated, to transport your horse within the state greater than 75 miles a horse owner is required by the State
of Colorado to possess a Brand Inspection for the horse being transported. This is obtained from a state Brand
Inspector and is in part a brief examination of the horse to record its breed, age, and markings. More importantly
the inspector must verify through documents supplied by the owner that the horse in question is legally owned. This can
be proven by supplying registration papers or a bill of sale.
Phone numbers of local inspectors for Pagosa Springs are:
For interstate transport the owner must, by law, possess a health certificate issued by an accredited veterinarian.
This certificate is issued after a health exam is performed that verifies the horse is in free from any signs of infectious
disease, and that the horse has had a Coggins Test certifying that it is free from Equine Infectious Anemia. The veterinarian
may not sign or issue the health certificate until the negative Coggins test is reported from an accredited laboratory.
Coggins Tests are valid for one year in most states, but all requirements for entry into a specific state should be verified before
transport. This information is available through the USDA website online.
A health certificate is valid for only 30 days from the time of issue. Also, one should allow at least 7-10 days from blood draw to
Coggins Test result to be on the safe side.
This blood test was devised to check for the presence of antibodies to Equine Infectious Anemia.
EIA is a blood borne viral disease that is spread by biting insects. Horse flies and deer flies are the main culprits.
Infected horses have a fever, depression and ultimately weight loss, anemia and a variety of other signs. There is no treatment.
Most horses die and those that don’t remain carriers. Most horses who are positive are euthanized or at least subjected to
severe federal quarantine restrictions. EIA is not common in the United States anymore (< .01%) thanks to this testing program.
Historically, horses in the western US and northeastern states are most at risk but sporadic cases have occurred throughout
the US due to increased transportation of horses.