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Oklahoma State University

Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV) case confirmed in Oklahoma

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

young chestnut foal in pasture

The Oklahoma Department of Food and Forestry announced July 30, 2019 that Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV) was confirmed in a Tillman County horse.  VSV has been reported in Texas, Colorado, New Mexico and Wyoming in 2019. This is the first case in Oklahoma since the 1990s. VSV is a viral disease affecting horses and all clovened hooved animals.

VSV does not typically cause death in animals, and human infection is rare.  Clinical signs are most commonly seen in horses and cattle and include: excessive salivation, decreased appetite, fever, vesicles (blisters) or sores in the mouth and on lips, lameness and sores or crusts on the underline and legs.

Transmission of the disease is not well understood, but insect vectors, mechanical transmission, and movement of animals can all play a role. Owners and veterinarians should be monitoring all susceptible animals closely as this disease can resemble Food and Mouth Disease and other foreign animal diseases. Biosecurity measures should be increased to help control the spread.

Diagnosis of positive animals is by a blood test and quarantine is required for positive or exposed animals. If an owner or veterinarian suspects VSV, the State Veterinarian’s office should be contacted immediately at 405-522-6141. Owners and veterinarians should prepare well in advance of travel for restrictions that may be placed on susceptible species moving interstate or internationally.

More information can be found at USDA Vesicular Stomatitis.

MEDIA CONTACT: Derinda Blakeney, APR | OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences | 405-744-6740 | derinda@okstate.edu

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