Bovine trichomoniasis found in Oglala Lakota County herds

South Dakota Animal Industry Board
Farm Forum

PIERRE — For the first time since 2016, bovine trichomoniasis (trich) has been detected in South Dakota cattle herds. Bulls from twobeef cattleherds in Oglala Lakota County have testedpositive for this economically devastating disease. The Animal Industry Board (AIB) is workingwith theherd owners and their veterinarians to develop a management plan to contain the disease. Neighboring herd owners with potential contact animals will be informed of the risk to their animals as the investigation continues.

Trichomonas foetus is a protozoal parasite that is transmitted between cows and bulls during breeding, and can result in early term abortions. Producers are often unaware of the problem until the disease is well established in the herd. Signs that the disease may be present in a herd include a high number of open (non-pregnant) and late-calving cows.

Producers can take precautions to help prevent their herd from becoming infected. First, only purchase and use virgin bulls for breeding. If non-virgin bulls are purchased, they must be tested negative for Trich prior to breeding. Timely pregnancy testing of females and prompt removal of open cows to be sold for feeding and slaughter will also decrease the risk of disease spread.

Livestock owners wishing to detect the presence of the disease in their herds should work with their veterinarian to test bullsprior to breeding. Bulls may also be tested two weeks after breeding for earlydetection of potential problems. Finally, maintaining good border fencing to keep livestock in their respective pastures and avoiding unintentional commingling of animals can protect herds.

In cooperation with the cattle industry the South Dakota AnimalIndustry Board has implemented rules in an effort to help prevent trich in cattle:

• Non-virgin bulls must be tested negative for trich prior to being sold, loaned or leased in South Dakota for breeding purposes.

• Any non-virgin bull entering South Dakota must be tested negative for trich.

• Non-virgin and non-pregnant female cattle may not be imported, loaned, leased nor acquired for breeding purposes in South Dakota.

Cattle producers with concerns about trichomoniasis should contact their herd veterinarian or the South Dakota Animal Industry Board at 605-773-3321.