NewsOn6.com

TULSA, Oklahoma -- The Breeder's Invitational has been postponed due to fears of spreading an equine virus that broke out earlier this month in Utah.

Two horses were diagnosed with equine herpesvirus (EHV) at a cutting horse show in Ogden, Utah, and organizers are concerned that horses exposed to the disease there could transport EHV to Tulsa.

The show was to start Sunday and continue through May 31st.

"We did not feel comfortable with the potential of exposing horses arriving in Tulsa to EHV," said Jeffrey Matthews, Breeder's Invitational board chairman.

"An outbreak at an event of this size could be devastating. The Board of Directors decided to take a conservative approach to the situation in the interest of protecting the health of the horses."

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, EHV can be a serious disease of horses that can cause abortion and death. Clinical signs include high fever, neurological symptoms and nasal discharge. The virus can spread through the air, contaminated equipment, clothing and hands.

Organizers hope to hold the Invitational later this year but say no firm plans have been made.