67 Weld properties quarantined with vesicular stomatitis
Quarantined properties per county
Adams County — 9
Boulder County — 60
Broomfield County — 1
Douglas County — 1
El Paso — 1
Jefferson County — 7
Larimer County — 38
Weld County — 67
The outbreak of vesicular stomatitis that began in mid July has expanded to 184 quarantined properties with 201 horses and three cows testing positive for the virus.
Weld County has the highest number of infected properties at 67, according to the Colorado Department of Agriculture.
Eight counties are currently affected in the state, but those and other counties are awaiting results from tests on additional animals.
According to officials at the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the ways VS can spread are not entirely understood, but “insect vectors, mechanical transmission and movement of animals” are several known ways the disease can spread.
“VS can be painful for animals and costly to their owners,” according to the Colorado Department of Agriculture. “The virus typically causes oral blisters and sores that can be painful causing difficulty in eating and drinking.”
Horses, mules, cattle, bison, sheep, goats, pigs and camelids are capable of contracting VS. Though rare, the disease can be transmitted to humans exposed to infected animals.
The department is not urging event organizers to cancel upcoming livestock events, but is instead urging venues and owners to take precautions with their animals.
“Livestock owners should not grow weary in doing well concerning insect control. There is some evidence that fly control practices have been an effective prevention tool in this present VS outbreak,” according to the Colorado Department of Agriculture.
For more information on the current outbreak and what livestock producers and veterinarians should do, visit http://www.colorado.gov/cs/Satellite/ag_Animals/CBON/1251630752270.
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