Owner says Chincoteague pony likely had 'swamp cancer'

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SALISBURY, Md. (AP) -- A buyback owner of a Chincoteague pony says "swamp cancer" is likely what caused the horse's death.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports a two-year-old Palomino filly named Cowboy Kisses was euthanized Thursday evening.

"Swamp cancer" isn't cancer, but rather pythiosis, caused by an organism similar to fungus. The disease leaves ponies with lesions on their bodies.

Buyback owner Joyce Glorioso wrote on Facebook in the Chincoteague Legacy Group that the veterinarian isn't certain the pony had the disease. Glorioso says Cowboy Kisses had received a series of three vaccinations to prevent it, but the vaccines were an experimental treatment.

If the pony did have "swamp cancer" she would be the eighth Chincoteague pony to die from the disease since it was first reported in the herd in 2018.



 
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