Kentucky Gov. Fletcher Signs Emergency Regulation Amending Ban On Texas Livestock

The ban on Texas livestock coming into Kentucky from Texas because of vesicular stomatitis (VS) has been amended by Kentucky Gov. Ernie Fletcher today (May 27) by an emergency regulation, according to a press release from the governor's office. The emergency regulation will allow livestock from most of Texas to enter the Commonwealth under certain conditions. Livestock would still be prohibited from entering Kentucky if it comes from any of about 60 west Texas counties surrounding the ranch where three horses were diagnosed with VS.

Gov. Fletcher's emergency regulation amends the 1996 rule that resulted in a ban of all livestock, wild animals, and exotic animals coming into Kentucky from states affected by VS.

"I have signed an order that minimizes the impact of the ban on the Kentucky livestock industry while maintaining adequate protections for Kentucky animals," stated Gov. Fletcher.

Equine coming into Kentucky from states that border Texas still must have a negative VS test within the 30-day period preceding entry into the Commonwealth.

All livestock on the affected ranch in Reeves County, Texas, will be quarantined for several weeks until they are found to be free of the disease, according to the Texas Animal Health Commission.

Approximately 2,099 head of livestock from Texas entered Kentucky in 2003, according to the Kentucky Department of Agriculture's Division of Animal Health. Most of the livestock were cattle, equine, and goats.

Vesicular stomatitis is a viral disease that occurs sporadically in the United States, usually in southwestern states. Before last week, it was last diagnosed in the United States in 1998 in Texas and New Mexico.

The disease can affect horses, cattle, and swine, sheep, goats,and deer. It causes blisters to form in the animal's mouth, on teats, or along the coronary bands of hooves. Discomfort from the blisters can cause an animal to stop eating or suffer temporary lameness. VS is rarely fatal and usually lasts about two weeks.

About the Author

Kimberly S. Brown

Kimberly S. Brown was the Publisher/Editor of The Horse: Your Guide To Equine Health Care from June 2008 to March 2010, and she served in various positions at Blood-Horse Publications since 1980.

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