Vesicular Stomatitis and State Health Requirements

August 12, 2019



Like many of you, I have been preparing to show at the Nebraska State Fair and had already set up a day to visit my veterinarian to get health papers. However, with the recent Vesicular Stomatitis outbreaks last reported in the states of Texas, Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico, Wyoming, and Oklahoma, the state of Nebraska has made the decision as of 8/6/19 to require all livestock and horses entering the Nebraska State Fair to have a 48-hour Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (CVI) to enter the fairgrounds. The CVI must also contain the federal VS Statement: "The animals represented on the CVI have not originated from premises or area under quarantine for Vesicular Stomatitis or a premise on which Vesicular Stomatitis has been diagnosed in the last (30) days. I have examined the animals and found no signs of Vesicular Stomatitis." Without this statement on your health papers, competitors will not be allowed to enter. Your animals must also pass the final livestock exam at the check-in gate before entering the fairgrounds.

 

So, what is Vesicular Stomatitis?  The Merck Manual refers to VS as a viral disease caused by two distinct serotypes of VSV. An article shared online from OIE explains VS as vesicles, ulcers, erosions, and crusting of the muzzle and lips; limited to the epithelial tissues of mouth, nostrils, teats, and feet. Cattle, horses, and pigs are susceptible. It's also possible to see in sheep, goats, and llamas but is very rare. Diagnostic signs are similar to that of foot and mouth and can be easily confused, except for in horses because they are resistant. Incidence can vary among herds, and only 10-15% have been said to show signs. Cattle and horses that are one year of age and younger are rarely affected. Recovery is anywhere from a few days to 2 weeks.

 

Due to the amount of incomplete and inaccurate information being put online, a friend of mine posted some good content on Facebook, encouraging others to share to help educate the public with accurate information. She explains that Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV) is one of several viruses her lab researches and that they often work with insects and mammalian hosts. She starts by stating that just because an animal can be experimentally infected with VSV does not mean they will be infected in the wild. She also points out that even though there is a current outbreak, deer are not a reservoir for this virus. Next, she moves onto flies as a source of transition. Barn and horse flies have not been shown to transmit this virus, but sandy flies and midges can.

 

For more details on this virus, check out the sources listed below from her post. In closing, she notes that this virus is easily spread by secretions from a nose, mouth, etc. Livestock producers and horse owners are encouraged to clean buckets, halters, and tack, and try to eliminate nose to nose contact, shared buckets, and community water. Also, remember to clean your shoes and boots. For any questions, work closely with your veterinarian or reach out to your local CVA feed specialist.
 

by Brandi Salestrom

 

Sources:

Merck Veterinary Manual

https://academic.oup.com/jme/article/42/3/409/849700

https://academic.oup.com/jme/article/40/6/957/837806

Lindsey Reister-Hendricks

Posted: 8/12/2019 11:07:21 AM by Kristin Petersen | with 0 comments