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VLADIVOSTOK, March 2 (Itar-Tass) — An outbreak of a foot-and-mouth epidemic has been reported from the settlement of Usachevka in Russia’s Far Eastern Primorsky Territory.
Foot-and-mouth disease cases were registered in six animals at a private farm, a spokesman for the territorial veterinary administration told Itar-Tass on Friday. Currently, measures are taken to stop the spread of the disease, including inoculation of the cattle. A disinfecting station has been installed at a road leading to the settlement. Specialists are trying to find the sources of the disease.
The last foot-and-mouth epidemic was registered in the Primorsky Territory in the fall of 2005. Foot-and-mouth cases were reported in nine settlements. All infected cattle – 1,715 cows – were slaughtered and buried at special burial places. Quarantine was imposed in the regions, more than 100,000 animals were vaccinated against the disease. As many as 25 million roubles were allocated from the local budget to pay compensations to farmers.
Foot-and-mouth disease or hoof-and-mouth disease is a highly infectious and sometimes fatal viral disease that affects cloven-hoofed animals, including domestic and wild bovids. The virus causes a high fever for two or three days, followed by blisters inside the mouth and on the feet that may rupture and cause lameness. The disease can be spread by infected animals through aerosols, through contact with contaminated farming equipment, vehicles, clothing or feed, and by domestic and wild predators. Its containment demands considerable efforts in vaccination, strict monitoring, trade restrictions and quarantines, and occasionally the elimination of millions of animals.