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Vesicular Stomatitis Confirmed In Texas

Vesicular Stomatitis Confirmed in Texas

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Vesicular stomatitis virus
An electron micrograph depicts VSV, the virus responsible for vesicular stomatitis (VS) in horses, cattle and pigs. Courtesy of US Department of Health and Human Services.

The Texas Animal Health Commission reported June 12 that vesicular stomatitis, a sporadically occurring virus that is endemic to the United States, has been detected in a horse in Starr County, Texas.

 

This is the nation’s first case of VS for 2009. The last outbreak was in 2006 where 17 horses and a dozen cattle on 13 premises within Wyoming were confirmed to have the virus.

Signs of the disease include blisters, lesions and sloughing of the skin on the muzzles, tongue, teats and above the hooves of susceptible livestock, including horses, cattle, sheep, pigs, deer and some other species of animals. Sand flies and black flies are thought to play a role in the virus transmission.

“To prevent the spread or introduction of infection, many states and countries will place additional entry requirements or restrictions on the movement of animals from affected states, or portions of the state,” said Bob Hillman, DVM, Texas’ state veterinarian and head of the TAHC. “Call the state or country of destination before moving livestock, to ensure that all entry requirements can be met. Do not risk shipments being turned away, or worse, spreading disease and facing legal action by animal health authorities.”

Sick animals should be moved away from the remainder of the herd but do not move sick animals from the premises, Dr. Hillman said. He also urged owners to call their veterinarian or the nearest TAHC area office, or the Austin headquarters at 800-550-8242. Laboratory testing to confirm infection can be run at no charge to the livestock owner, Hillman added.

Treatment of VS-infected animals consists of supportive care, and antibiotics may be needed to prevent secondary infections in the open sores, according to the TAHC. Animal health officials in nearly all states, including Texas, require VS-infected animals and their herd mates to be quarantined until at least 21 days after all lesions have healed. The state veterinarian’s office must conduct a follow-up examination of the animals prior to quarantine release. <HOME>

The Texas Animal Health Commission reported June 12 that vesicular stomatitis, a sporadically occurring virus that is endemic to the United States, has been detected in a horse in Starr County, Texas. The Texas Animal Health Commission reported June 12 that vesicular stomatitis, a sporadically occurring virus that is endemic to the United States, has been detected in a horse in Starr County, Texas. Vesicular Stomatitis, Texas Animal Health Commission, horses, sick animals, VS, vs-infected, TAHC

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