Colorado Vesicular Stomatitis update: 184 quarantines
The Colorado Department of Agriculture’s State Veterinarian’s Office currently has 184 locations under quarantine after horses and cows tested positive for Vesicular Stomatitis (VS). The quarantines are located in Adams, Boulder, Broomfield, Douglas, El Paso, Jefferson, Larimer, and Weld counties; results on additional tests in these and other counties are pending. VS can be painful for animals and costly to their owners. The virus typically causes oral blisters and sores that can be painful causing difficulty in eating and drinking. In Colorado there are 201 horses and 3 cows that tested positive for VS.
“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, Dr. Keith Roehr. “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.”
County totals are:
Adams County – 9
Boulder County – 60
Broomfield County – 1
Douglas County – 1
El Paso – 1
Jefferson County – 7
Larimer County – 38
Weld County – 67
Veterinarians and livestock owners who suspect an animal may have VS or any other vesicular disease should immediately contact State or federal animal health authorities. Livestock with clinical signs of VS are isolated until they are healed and determined to be of no further threat for disease spread. There are no USDA approved vaccines for VS.
While rare, human cases of VS can occur, usually among those who handle infected animals. VS in humans can cause flu-like symptoms and only rarely includes lesions or blisters.
Colorado State University – Veterinary Diagnostic Lab (CSU-VDL) has assisted CDA and USDA in responding to the VS outbreak by acting as a sample drop-off site in which practicing veterinarians can drop off samples from possible VS cases. The samples are then packaged and submitted to the USDA National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa by state or federal personnel. CSU-VDL’s involvement has helped us to be more efficient in our response activities.
–Colorado Department of Agriculture