Dairy farmers worried over viral skin disease in cattle
Maranellur (Thiruvananthapuram): The dairy farmers are in crisis after a new kind of viral disease spread is seen among the cattle. The disease was spotted in cows in Russelpuram, Santhipuram and Veliyamkode areas in Maranellur and Balaramapuram panchayats.
The farmers said that first small lumps appear on the skin of cows and then they turn into wounds. As the cows eat less amount of food after getting infected, the milk production also decreases, they complained. A farmer in Russelpuram used to get 15 litres of milk a day and this reduced to nearly 3 litres after the cow was infected.
As the wounds do not heal quickly, the cows cannot lie down due to severe pain and are given painkillers, the farmers said. The Department of Animal Husbandry informed that the viral disease is known as lumpy skin disease. The disease is caused by capripox virus and is spread through mosquitoes and flies.
Disease can be transmitted through the wounds and through physical contact. Vaccine is available to prevent the disease. The small lumps turn into wounds because the disease is not treated in the initial phase, the authorities said.
Meanwhile, Dr Arun of Maranellur veterinary hospital said that no cow in Maranellur panchayat has been severely affected with lumpy skin disease and their milk production has not reduced.