Lumpy skin disease outbreak reported at Okakarara

The Directorate of Veterinary Services in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform has alerted farmers about the outbreak of lumpy skin disease, at the Otjituuo and Okamatapati areas of Okakarara state veterinary district in the otjozondjupa region.

This was confirmed by the ministry acting chief veterinary officer, Johannes Shoopala, in a media statement on Friday.

Shoopala said so far a total of eight cattle from different villages have been affected.

“Lumpy skin disease is a vector-borne, infectious, occasionally fatal disease of cattle characterised by nodules on the skin and other parts of the body and is normally transmitted by insect bites,” Shoopala said.

He advised farmers in the areas to vaccinate their healthy cattle and to control vectors.

“Cattle showing clinical signs receive vitamins, anti-inflammatory drugs and antibiotics to control secondary bacterial infection,” Shoopala said.

According to him, in order to safeguard the meat industry and to protect the interest of Namibia trading partners, and in line with the provision of Animal Health Act of 2011, the directorate has instituted controlled movements of cattle in affected villages.

“Cattle moving from affected villages are allowed, on condition that they are not showing clinical signs and are vaccinated at least 21 days before such a movement. Cattle moving into the affected villages must be vaccinated at least 21 days before such a movement takes place. The above measures exclude animals destined for direct slaughter,” Shoopala added.

“The directorate is further requesting the full cooperation of farmers during this time to ensure the shortest possible delay to normalisation of farming in the area,” he said.

For enquiries, farmers are urged to contact the Okakarara state veterinarian at 067 317901.

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