Published On: Fri, Jul 19th, 2013

Anthrax confirmed in South Dakota calf, first case of 2013

The South Dakota State veterinarian announced the first animal case of anthrax in the state this year, according an Animal Industry Board news release.


photo 24oranges.nl via Flickr

photo 24oranges.nl via Flickr

The release says that State Veterinarian Dr. Dustin Oedekoven confirmed that a 4 month-old calf was lost in a small herd of unvaccinated cattle in Turner County. An alert cattle producer, a local veterinarian, and the SDSU Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory are credited with the rapid detection of the disease in this herd.

Anthrax is a pathogen in livestock and wild animals. Some of the more common herbivores are cattle, sheep, goats, horses, camels and deers.

Anthrax is a very serious disease of livestock because it can potentially cause the rapid loss of a large number of animals in a very short time. Affected animals are often found dead with no illness detected.

It infects humans primarily through occupational or incidental exposure with infected animals of their skins.

Anthrax is caused by the bacterium, Bacillus anthracis. This spore forming bacteria can survive in the environment for years because of its ability to resist heat, cold, drying, etc. this is usually the infectious stage of anthrax.

When conditions become favorable, the spores germinate into colonies of bacteria. An example would be a grazing cow ingests spores that in the cow, germinate, grow spread and eventually kill the animal.

The bacteria will form spores in the carcass and then return to the soil to infect other animals. The vegetative form is rarely implicated in transmission.

There are no reports of person-to-person transmission of anthrax. People get anthrax by handling contaminated animal or animal products, consuming undercooked meat of infected animals and more recently, intentional release of spores.

There are three types of human anthrax with differing degrees of seriousness: cutaneous, gastrointestinal and inhalation.

Producers across the state should consult their veterinarians and vaccinate livestock, if deemed appropriate. Dr. Oedekoven advises producers in the Turner County area to continue to vaccinate cattle and other livestock for the next several years.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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  1. Biological Hazard – Namibia, Caprivi Region, [Masikili-Nakabolelelwa area] : Anthrax | Family Survival Protocol - Microcosm News says:

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  2. Anthrax confirmed in South Dakota calf, first case of 2013 | biblebabe778's Blog says:

    […] http://www.theglobaldispatch.com/anthrax-confirmed-in-south-dakota-calf-first-case-of-2013-2013/ […]

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