Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR)-2
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CTA. 2004. Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR)-2. Rural Radio Resource Pack 04/03. Wageningen, The Netherlands: CTA.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/57275
Dr Folashade Ajasin a veterinary doctor at the College of Animal Health in Ibadan, Nigeria.
Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR)-2 Cue: Livestock viruses are a major threat both to animal health and to farmer income. In the case of sheep and goats, the virus known as PPR, short for Peste des Petits Ruminants, is particularly dangerous. Infected animals have a wide range of symptoms, but the most serious is diarrhoea. Animals that die from PPR usually die from dehydration. Treating the symptoms, for example by forcing the animal to drink fluids, and giving general antibiotics to fight secondary infections, can help to keep an animal alive until it recovers from the virus. But a much easier solution is to protect livestock from catching the disease through vaccination. The vaccine for PPR gives life long protection, so it only needs to be given once. And if farmers can organise themselves into a group to vaccinate their animals, they can reduce the cost to an affordable level. Dr Folashade Ajasin is a veterinary doctor at the College of Animal Health in Ibadan, Nigeria. She spoke to Tunde Fatunde about how farmers can recognise PPR when it occurs, and the benefits of vaccination. She begins by explaining the age at which sheep and goats are most vulnerable to the disease. IN: ?It is from the age of four months? OUT: ?That is when they rush to the veterinarian.? DUR?N 5?07? BACK ANNOUNCEMENT: Dr Folashade Ajasin, on the value of vaccination to protect sheep and goats against Peste des Petits Ruminants, also known as Goat Plague. Transcript Ajasin It is from the age of four months up to about eight to ten months, that?s when they are usually more susceptible. When they are over eight to ten months, one way or another they would have come into contact with the virus and as such would have developed their own immunity at that age. The good thing about PPR is that you cannot easily pick it up from the air, the animals have to come into contact. Tunde With what? Ajasin With an infected animal, with secretions from an infected animal, or with a carcass of an infected animal. They can also pick up the infection when an animal that has no immunity, that has not been previously vaccinated, when they come in contact with the workers who had worked with infected animals or with utensils that had been used by infected animals, like the feed troughs and the water troughs. Tunde Now what are the physical symptoms of an animal that contracts this disease PPR? Ajasin The first thing a farmer would notice is that the animal would be dull. The coat, the hair would be rough. There would be no appetite. If it is possible to take the temperature there would be fever, the temperature would be high, as high as 40-41 degrees Celsius. When you open the mouth of the animal you will notice that there are areas of inflammation, redness around the gum and you also notice oral secretions from the mouth. It is the saliva, there is excess salivation but it is not enough to cause drooling. There is also secretions from the eyes and from the nose. The secretions from the nose is watery at the initial stage and with time, as time progresses it becomes thicker. Sometimes thick enough to be able to affect the breathing of the animal. You will notice that the animal has difficulty in breathing and sometimes these mucus secretions will form crusts in the nose and around the eye region. Tunde What would they normally do when they discover these symptoms of PPR? I?m talking about the farmers. Ajasin The farmers in most cases, for those of them who have access to veterinary doctors or personnel, I think what they normally do is to get in touch with their veterinary personnel to come and treat the animal so that as soon as possible the ones that have not been affected will be spared and the ones that have been affected, the effect will be reduced on them. Tunde Is it that these animals are vaccinated, is there a kind of vaccine against PPR? Ajasin Yes there is a vaccine against PPR. It is a vaccine that is meant for a disease that commonly affects cattle, known as cattle plague (rinderpest). But fortunately it has a relationship with the virus that is responsible for PPR in sheep and goats. So it is possible to use the vaccine meant for rinderpest disease to take care of PPR in goats. Tunde Which means that once the farmer notices that the goats and sheep are behaving abnormally he takes them to the clinic and they are vaccinated against that. Is that a way of preventing these animals getting this common disease? Ajasin Yes. First and foremost, by the time it starts having the infection it is almost too late to vaccinate against it. Although you can vaccinate those that have not come in contact with the affected ones it is advisable that the animals are vaccinated before they come down with the infection. Usually we recommend that the animals are vaccinated at 4 months. And the infection PPR is more common during the rainy season. We always advise our farmers just before the rainy season, if you have new stock you should do your vaccination, or if you are buying animals from the general markets and you don?t know if they have been vaccinated or not, that you should get them vaccinated before you mix them with your old stock on the farm. Tunde What is the attitude of the farmers to PPR? Is it that they try to vaccinate all the goats and sheep or is it that they wait until these goats and sheep are affected or infected by PPR? Ajasin It depends on where the farmers are located and it depends on the size of the farm and the experience of the farmer. For the very experienced ones they have learnt their lessons, they take their animals as soon as they have been purchased or as soon as they reach the age of four months for vaccination. For the not so experienced ones sometimes it is when they have an outbreak on their hands. That is when they rush to the veterinarian. End of track.