By NewsDesk    @infectiousdiseasenews

Earlier this week, the Colorado Department of Agriculture reported positive vesicular stomatitis (VSV) test results on samples submitted from two horses in Weld County via the National Veterinary Services Laboratory.


The two horses reside on separate locations in Weld County and have been placed under quarantine.  This makes Colorado the 3rd state to report a confirmed case of VSV (Texas and New Mexico).

Agriculture officials say both premises in Colorado are private residences with horses as the only livestock species present.  The index premises has 1 of 2 horses presenting with lesions on the sheath and no history of recent movements on or off the premises. The subsequent positive premises has 1 of 3 horses presenting with lip and tongue lesions with a history of only pleasure riding nearby the premises 2 weeks prior and no other recent movements.  There are no additional animals at either location currently showing clinical signs of VSV.  Both premises are under state quarantine and will remain so until at least 14 days from the onset of lesions in the last affected animal on the premises.

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Vesicular Stomatitis is a viral disease that primarily affects horses and cattle and occasionally swine, sheep, goats, llamas, and alpacas.  The transmission of VSV is not completely understood, but includes insect vectors such as black flies, sand flies, and biting midges.  The incubation period ranges from 2-8 days.  Clinical signs include vesicles, erosions, and sloughing of the skin on the muzzle, tongue, teats, and coronary bands.  Often excessive salivation is the first sign of disease, along with a reluctance to eat or drink. Lameness and weight loss may follow.

Humans may become infected when handling affected animals, but this is a rare event.  To avoid human exposure, individuals should use personal protective measures when handling affected animals.

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