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Case notes on veterinary investigations in sheep, cattle and other species

District Veterinarian Conference, April 2017



Campylobacter abortion in sheep
Written by: Rahul Shankar, District Veterinarian, Riverina LLS, Young
Making a definitive diagnosis of campylobacter abortion can often prove difficult as animal health staff are often told about the issues at a time when testing is not worthwhile when owners notice abortions/perinatal deaths but only began investigation around marking or weaning time ... Read More

Disease control to improve sheep carcase and carcase parts yield
Written by: Kate Wingett, Margaret Allman-Farinelli and Robyn Alders, University of Sydney
The ABS only publish data on livestock products that are passed for human consumption, leaving an undetermined but significant quantity of nutrient-dense, energy-dense sheep meat and offal condemned in processing or used as animal feed ... Read More

Field gastrointestinal worm count in sheep and goats
Written by: Bill Johnson, South East LLS, Goulburn
With practice, a field total worm count adds less than ten minutes to a routine autopsy, far less time than to collect and submit laboratory samples, and requires minimal equipment ... Read More

Fireweed in sheep and the food chain
Written by: Helen Schaefer, District Veterinarian, South East Local Land Services, Bega
Fireweed is one of approximately thirty Senecio species reported to be responsible for livestock and human toxicity around the world. The toxic potential of Senecio species is due to the presence of pyrrolizidine alkaloids in all above-ground parts of the plant ... Read More

A study into reports of nephritis in lambs in the South Australian mallee
Written by: Jeremy Rogers, Senior Veterinary Officer, State Flora Office, Murray Bridge, South Australia & Elise Matthews, Veterinary Officer, EAS Manager & Kirsty Cordon, Veterinary Officer; PIRSA, Glenside, South Australia
An apparently rising incidence of lesions described as “Nephritis” in lambs being inspected at two major abattoirs in South Australia led to a study attempting to define the syndrome, it's costs to production (if any) and possible mitigations ... Read More

Weaner sheep colitis of uncertain aetiology: a case study
Written by: Scott Ison, Murray Local Land Services, Deniliquin, Erika Bunker, NSW State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, Menangle and Jim Walsh, Coopers Animal Health, Bendigo
This case report describes an investigation of seasonal weaner colitis in a self-replacing fine wool merino flock with an apparent failure of, or resistance to, antibiotic treatment ... Read More


Bovine viral diarrhoea virus - potential for control and eradication in Australia
Written by: Kate Sawford, Braidwood, South East Local Land Services and Genevieve Hannaford, Charles Sturt University
Bovine viral diarrhoea virus (BVDV) is the most prevalent infectious disease of cattle worldwide. In Australia, BVDV is endemic throughout the cattle population with greater than 80% of herds surveyed showing some level of exposure to the pathogen ... Read more

Cysticercus bovis: background to the NSW program and review of cases
Written by: Graham Bailey, Cattle Health Coordinator, NSW Department of Primary Industries, Orange
The metacestodes (or larval cestodes) of Taenia secies tapeworms are the cause of cysticercosis in various farmed and wild animals and in humans ... Read more

Facial eczema in the Bega Valley
Written by: Helen Schaefer, South East Local Land Services, Bega
Facial eczema is a disorder mainly of sheep and cattle primarily involving liver damage, though is most often recognized as a form of photosensitisation affecting a number of the flock or herd at once ... Read more

Foreign fevers - Rift Valley fever, East Coast fever and classical swine fever
Written by: Nigel Brown, Northern Tablelands Local Land Services, Glen Innes
Rift Valley fever (RVF), East Coast fever (ECF) and classical swine fever (CSF) are three diseases with differing epidemiology and disease attributes which might be introduced into Australia. This paper aims to provide a summary of these diseases ... Read more


Animal welfare in developing countries
Written by: Nigel Brown, DV Glen Innes
This presentation is based on my own experiences having worked as a veterinarian in about 36 different countries, primarily those are in the Middle East and North Africa but I have recently worked in Mongolia for five years ... Read more

Bat brains, biosecurity, and beyond
Written by: P Shearer,1, H Bender,2, and M Gabor1
1Elizabeth Macarthur Agricultural Institute, Menangle NSW
2Australian Animal Health Laboratory, Geelong, VIC

Bats are a natural host and vector of many zoonotic diseases, including the enzootic Australian Bat Lyssavirus (ABLV) and Hendra virus, and the exotic Nipah, Ebola, Melaka, and Marburg viruses ... Read more

Prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) carriage among pet dogs in remote NSW
Written by: Gemma Ma, Jacqui Norris, Michael Ward, Sydney School of Veterinary Science, the University of Sydney
A survey of dogs and cats living in the communities of Bourke, Enngonia, Brewarrina, Goodooga and Weilmoringle in remote north-west NSW was conducted in September and October 2016 to estimate the prevalence of MRSA carriage ... Read more

Rabies preparedness and response in Northern Australia
Written by: Professor Michael Ward, Sydney School of Veterinary Science, The University of Sydney
A state-transition disease spread model has been developed and parameterized. Individual dogs are the unit of interest; at any point in time they can exist in only one of four mutually exclusive states: susceptible to rabies infection; latently-infected; infectious; and removed ... Read more

Written by: Kate Wingett, NSW DPI, Orange
Tularaemia is a zoonotic disease caused by Francisella tularensis, is an OIE-listed disease and is currently an emergency animal disease in NSW and Australia ... Read more

The veterinarian-horse owner relationship in Australia
Written by: Charis Hiia, Kathrin Schemanna, Melanie Taylorb, Jenny-Ann Toribioa, Anke Wiethoeltera, Nicole Schembrib, Kate Sawforda, Nina Kungc, Hume Fieldce, Barbara Moloneyd, Therese Wrightd and Navneet Dhanda
aThe University of Sydney; bWestern Sydney University; cQueensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries; dNSW Department of Primary Industries; eEcoHealth Alliance

The veterinarian-horse owner relationship is considered very important for animal welfare, biosecurity engagement programs, and passive surveillance. This study was conducted to understand the veterinarian-horse owner relationship in the context of the issues surrounding Hendra virus vaccine uptake ... Read more

Wildlife health incidents and investigations
Written by: Claire Harrison, NSW DPI Orange
Wildlife health incidents are inherently complex; complicated with difficulties such as remote locations, lack of accurate ecological data, cross-jurisdictional or cross-agency responsibilities, unrecognised clinical signs or mortalities and lack of validated diagnostic tests ... Read more



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