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FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE IN CAMELIDS

SUMMARY

1)      There have been a number of studies on the prevalence of FMD in camelids and their susceptibility to FMD.

2)      The results of many of these studies have been published in various journals of veterinary medicine.

3)      A summary of the results of these studies is as follows:

i)      Although camelids can be infected with FMDV by direct contact, they have low susceptibility to FMDV;

ii)     Where camelids are infected with FMDV, symptoms are relatively mild compared to other susceptible animals, e.g. they may develop minor lesions, fever and some lameness.  This has led experts to believe that camelids are therefore much more resistant to FMDV than most other susceptible species;

iii)    Even where camelids have been infected with FMDV, the virus has not been detectable 14 days post exposure;

iv)     The available evidence also supports the conclusion that there is a very low risk, if any, of camelids transmitting the disease to other susceptible species.  This conclusion is based on studies where susceptible animals, typically cattle, sheep, goats and pigs have been placed in direct contact with experimentally infected llamas and alpacas;

v)      Camelids do not therefore present a serious epidemiological risk.




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