Two Arizona Horses Test Positive for Vesicular Stomatitis

Three premises in Santa Cruz County have been quarantined as a result of the positives.

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Two horses in Santa Cruz County, Arizona, have tested positive for the vesicular stomatitis virus. One affected animal was moved to its owner’s nearby property prior to the investigation; as a result three properties and all the animals residing on them are under quarantine.

The horses involved have no history of widespread travel, and other livestock located on the quarantined premises are showing no signs of disease. A USDA official launched the investigation before bringing the Arizona Department of Agriculture into the investigation. The investigation is ongoing to detect disease and prevent further spread.

“Vesicular stomatitis virus mainly affects equids and to a lesser extent cattle and swine,” said Arizona state veterinarian Perry Durham, DVM. “It can be painful for animals and costly to deal with.”

Other susceptible species include bison, sheep, goats, pigs, and camelids. The clinical signs of the disease include vesicles, erosions, and sloughing of the skin on the muzzle, tongue, teats and above the hooves of susceptible livestock. Vesicles are usually only seen early in the course of the disease. The transmission of vesicular stomatitis is not completely understood but components include insect vectors, mechanical transmission, and livestock movement

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