Vesicular Stomatitis Detected in Texas

Released May 28, 2014

Vesicular Stomatitis Detected in Five Horses in Kinney County -  First Case in the US This Year  

AUSTIN - Vesicular stomatitis (VS) has been detected in five horses in far Southwest Texas, (in Kinney County, southeast of Del Rio, TX). The U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed the viral infection of the five horses. The horses were tested after the owner observed blistering and swelling on the animals' muzzles and contacted their veterinary practitioner.  Testing at the National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) confirmed the virus as the New Jersey serotype.

The newly identified infected group of horses is currently under quarantine by the TAHC. Affected and exposed horses will be monitored by regulatory veterinarians until all lesions have healed and a decision is made to release the quarantine (a minimum of 21 days). There is no known exposure to other horses around the state, or at any equine events. No other cases of VS have been identified in the immediate area or elsewhere in the state.

Why is this important?

While vesicular stomatitis can cause economic losses to livestock producers, it is a particularly significant disease because its outward signs are similar to (although generally less severe than) those of foot-and-mouth disease, a foreign animal disease of cloven-hooved animals that was eradicated from the United States in 1929.  The clinical signs of vesicular stomatitis are also similar to those swine vesicular disease, another foreign animal disease.  The only way to tell these diseases apart is through laboratory tests.

South Carolina Import Restrictions for VS  (R27-1013E)

Wild and domesticated hoofed animals, including but not limited to bovine, equine, porcine, ovine, caprine and cervidae, are prohibited entry into South Carolina if they have been exposed to Vesicular Stomatitis within thirty(30) days immediately preceding theiry entry into South Carolina, or if they originated from an area within ten (10) miles of a premise where VS has been diagnosed in the thirty (30) days immediately preceding entry into South Carolina. All animals described above which originate in a state or area in which VS has been diagnosed must have the following statement written by the accredited veterinarian ussing the CVI: "All animals identified on the certificate have been examined and found to be free of VS. During the past thirty (30) days, these animals have not been exposed to VS nor located within ten (10) miles of an area where VS has been diagnosed."