The Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (WADDL) within the College of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University in Pullman is one of an elite group of veterinary facilities that use sophisticated molecular tools to diagnose disease, with labs for bacteriology, parasitology, pathology, serology, and virology. One threat they've been keeping a particularly keen eye out for this summer is West Nile Virus, which they have in fact found in horses, and which led the State to issue warnings for both animals (to have them vaccinated) and humans (to take extra precautions). West Nile is transmitted from infected birds, through biting mosquitos, and on to larger warm-blooded creatures. Because this has been such a hot, dry summer across most of the U.S., birds and mosquitos are finding themselves more often sharing the same rare watering hole, which may be causing the rise in West Nile cases. West Nile is an example of a zoonotic disease, meaning that it can be transfered between species. The role of veterinary labs like WADDL in tracking and identifying cases of these diseases is doubly important, then, as they work to prevent epidemics in our animals as well as ourselves.