Rain brings more diseases

Rain has fallen in many parts of the country and this means ticks, insects and worms, according to the latest monthly report on livestock disease trends as informally reported by veterinarians belonging to the Ruminant Veterinary Association of South Africa (RuVASA).

Reports of diseases transmitted by ticks (African and Asiatic red water; anaplasmosis; heartwater, lumpy skin disease and sweating sickness) and biting insects (anaplasmosis; blue tongue; ephemeral fever; lumpy skin disease, Rift Valley fever and African horse sickness) have been received. Tick damage, especially to the udders of cows, could cause great economic losses to farmers.

Wireworm outbreaks have been reported from all nine provinces. Make sure to discuss your management program with your veterinarian as resistance of this deadly internal parasite to drug groups may cause huge losses.

Diseases that are reported every month are brucellosis, trichomonosis, vibriosis, cryptosporidiosis, orf, pasteurellosis, e. coli and pulpy kidney.

To assess your risk, talk to your local veterinarian and update your vaccination and holistic parasite management program. Visit the Ruminant Veterinary Association of South Africa’s website (www.ruvasa.co.za) and click on Disease reporting to see what diseases are prevalent in your area. Take the necessary steps in time, as from experience it is seen that vaccine availability during an outbreak could be a huge problem. If vaccines are not available insect and tick control are of utmost importance.

Visit the National Animal Health Forum’s website regularly where updates on animal health are posted (www.nahf.co.za).