Colorado, Texas Report Additional VS Quarantines

Colorado, Texas Report Additional VS Quarantines

The viral disease can cause blisters and sores in the mouth and on the tongue, muzzle, teats, or hooves of horses, cattle, swine, sheep, goats, llamas, and a number of other animals.

Photo: Courtesy Dr. Josie Traub-Dargatz

Animal health officials in Colorado and Texas have reported additional equine cases of vesicular stomatitis (VS) in both states.

The viral disease can cause blisters and sores in the mouth and on the tongue, muzzle, teats, or hooves of horses, cattle, swine, sheep, goats, llamas, and a number of other animals. Lesions usually will heal in two or three weeks. Because of the contagious nature of VS and its resemblance to other diseases such as foot and mouth disease, animal health officials urge livestock owners and caretakers to report these symptoms to their veterinarian immediately. Most animals recover well with supportive care by a veterinarian, but some lesions can be painful.

Colorado—In Colorado, 201 horses and three cows have tested positive for VS so far this year. The Colorado Department of Agriculture’s State Veterinarian’s Office currently has 184 locations under quarantine. The quarantines are located in Adams (9 premises), Boulder (60 premises), Broomfield (1 premises), Douglas (1 premises), El Paso (1 premises), Jefferson (7 premises), Larimer (38 premises), and Weld (67 premises) counties; results on additional tests in these and other counties are pending.

“The Colorado Department of Agriculture is not recommending events be cancelled; instead, we are recommending that events and livestock owners take extra caution to control flies,” said State Veterinarian Keith Roehr, DVM. “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.”

If transporting an animal to a different state, officials urge Colorado veterinarians and livestock owners should contact the state of destination to ensure that all import requirements are met. A list of contact information for all state veterinarians’ offices is available at www.colorado.gov/ag/animals and click on "Import Requirements."

Texas—Meanwhile, the Texas Animal Health Commission has received confirmation of two new cases of VS in horses located 8 miles northwest of Bastrop in Bastrop County.

The newly identified infected premises are currently quarantined. Affected horses will be monitored by regulatory veterinarians while under quarantine. Premises are eligible for quarantine release 21 days after all lesions have healed.

To date, 55 premises in 11 Texas counties have been quarantined due to VS. Currently affected counties include Bastrop, Falls, Guadalupe, Travis, and Williamson. Eleven of the 55 premises in six counties (Jim Wells, Kinney, Nueces, San Patricio, Val Verde, and Hidalgo) have been released from quarantine.

Several states have provided the TAHC with information on enhanced entry requirements they are imposing on Texas livestock (including horses) due to the recently announced VS cases in Texas. For information about these movement restrictions, contact the state or country of destination and/or visit www.tahc.texas.gov/news/2014StateRestrictionsOnTX_VS.pdf.

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