5 common diseases that affect livestock

Diseases cause livestock to suffer and often result in death. It’s vital to recognise the signs of these common diseases and to seek assistance from a vet immediately. Prompt action can prevent diseases from spreading. You can find livestock for sale on AgriMag.

Anthrax

Anthrax is an infectious disease that claims the lives of cattle. This disease is caused by Bacillus anthracis, which produces toxins that make cattle sick and ultimately leads to their death. The symptoms can be noticed three to seven days after the animal is infected. After the initial symptoms, the animal will typically die in the following two days. Infection usually occurs when cattle swallow anthrax spores while they’re grazing or when they inhale the spores.

Symptoms

● Quick death
● In some cases the animal will tremble and have an elevated temperature
● Struggling to breathe
● Convulsions
● Bloody emissions from nose and mouth

Treatment and control

Early treatment can prevent the death of cattle so it’s important to keep a close eye on their health. However, this disease is highly contagious and leads to fast deaths, so prevention is the best approach. Antibiotics are used to treat the skin disease that is a variation of anthrax.

Prevention

Vaccinate your animals every year and take extra precautions in endemic regions. Don’t disturb the body of an animal that may have died from anthrax and make sure that it is dealt with properly to prevent other animals from being infected

Livestock Diseases - Sheep - AgriMag
Image Credit – George Hiles on Unsplash

Black quarter

Black quarter is an infectious disease that is caused by clostridium chauvoei. This disease is soil-borne and is most common during periods of high rainfall. Young cattle are particularly vulnerable to black quarter. It typically leads to the death of livestock.

Symptoms

● Elevated pulse, temperature, and heartbeat
● Animals stop eating
● Depression
● Struggling to breathe
● Lameness, swelling, and pain

Treatment and control

Early treatment by a vet is essential to cure this fatal disease. Death occurs rapidly after infection so it’s important to take action immediately if you notice any signs of disease in your animals.

Prevention

Be vigilant and look out for the early warning signs of illness, and consult a vet immediately to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Ethnovet practices can also be used to decrease the likelihood of infection.

Bluetongue

Bluetongue commonly affects sheep and cattle, although cattle do not always display symptoms of the disease. The virus is spread from midges that are part of the cullicoides species. Unhygienic practices can also spread bluetongue.

Symptoms

Despite the name, a bluetongue is not a common symptom of infection.
Sheep
● Emissions from the eyes and nose
● Elevated temperature
● Drooling
● Swelling
● Lameness
● Struggling to breathe
● Inflammation
Cattle
● Emissions from the nose
● Swelling
● Fatigue
● Fever
● Conjunctivitis

Treatment and control

Keep a close eye on the health of your animals and check the linings of the mouth and nose regularly for any signs of disease. Seek medical advice immediately if you notice any symptoms of illness.

Preventative measures

Attending to medical concerns promptly is the best strategy to prevent the spread of common diseases. Ethnovet practices can also be used as an additional precaution.

Livestock Diseases - Cattle - AgriMag
Image Vredit – Celia Sun on Unsplash

Pox

Pox is a severely infectious disease and commonly ends in death or damage to wool and skin. Animals below the age of six months are particularly vulnerable.

Symptoms

● High fever
● Pneumonia
● Acute enteritis
● Skin lesions
● Emaciation

Treatment and control

Animals should be treated under the guidance of your vet with palliatives. Nursing is essential for younger animals. Feed a soft diet and wash ulcers gently with potassium permanganate lotion as well as a small amount of boric acid.

Preventative measures

Change bedding daily and burn the old bedding to prevent the spread of infection. Maintain rigid hygienic practices to ensure that other animals don’t become infected.

Listeriosis

Listeriosis is caused by organisms that are found in faeces, milk, sewerage, and silage. These organisms can also be found in soil and dust.

Symptoms

● Stiff neck
● Uncoordinated movement
● Muscle paralysis

Treatment and control

A quick response is vital to the success of treatment. Infected animals can be treated with Tetracyclines under the guidance of a qualified vet.

Preventative measures

Change bedding regularly and dispose of old bedding properly to prevent the disease from spreading to other animals.

Knowledge of common diseases is essential to safeguard the well being of livestock. You can find livestock for sale on AgriMag.

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Common diseases that affect livestock | AgriMag Blog
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Common diseases that affect livestock | AgriMag Blog
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5 common diseases cause livestock to suffer and often result in death. It’s vital to recognise the signs and to seek assistance from a vet immediately.
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AgriMag
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1 Response

  1. nico mosweu says:

    very educational pls keep me updated on your future publications

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