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SD Animal Industry Board warns of livestock virus

South Dakota Animal Industry Board

A livestock disease known as Vesicular stomatitis, or VSV, has been confirmed in horses in Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas.

The South Dakota Animal Industry Board is warning livestock producers and taking active measures to keep the virus, which can affect all forms of livestock, out of the state.

Dr. Dustin Odekoven is the South Dakota State Veterinarian. He says this virus has been shown to have an impact on the livelihood of producers in the past.

"The cows we’re uncomfortable, they weren’t eating, they went off feed, they discovered blisters and lesions, and the weaned their calves early," says Odekoven. "So, that did cause some production losses in those herds, where calves were weaned early or they weren’t gaining as well as they were expected to, and that’s another reason why we want to try to limit the speed of the virus in species such as horses, because we don’t want to see it get into the cattle population and be a production limiting disease.”

Odekoven says the virus is often confused with Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease and encourages producers to have their livestock inspected by a vet.

All horses coming into South Dakota from the impacted states must have a veterinary permit that says the horse isn’t infected.