PIERRE – Vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), a reportable disease of livestock, has been confirmed in horses in Colorado, New Mexico and Texas.
Effective immediately, all horses entering South Dakota from states with active quarantines for vesicular stomatitis must have a certificate of veterinary inspection (CVI) and an import permit. Import permits are already and will continue to be required for all other livestock species susceptible to VSV. Accredited veterinarians issuing CVIs can acquire an import permit by calling the SD Animal Industry Board at 605.773.3321.
VSV is a sporadic disease that causes painful blisters and sores on the mouth, nostrils, teats and feet of horses, cattle, swine and other livestock. Flies and midges are the insect vectors responsible for transmitting VSV. The virus can also be spread through direct contact with infected livestock and indirectly through contact with contaminated equipment and tack. Isolation of affected and exposed animals, as well as fly and insect control are the most important steps in preventing the disease. Good sanitation and bio-security measures can help avoid exposure.
State Veterinarian Dr. Dustin Oedekoven is recommending owners monitor their livestock, especially horses, closely. Owners traveling with their livestock to shows, exhibitions or events should be diligent in their observations.
If you suspect VSV in your animals, contact your veterinarian immediately. Vesicular stomatitis should be immediately reported to the South Dakota state veterinarian at 605.773.3321. Affected premises are quarantined to prevent the spread of this disease. People who are in close contact with affected animals may develop an influenza-like illness with symptoms including fever, muscle aches and headache.