Epidemiological Survey of Infectious Bovine Rhinotracheitis in France
Epidemiological surveys and diagnostic examinations show that IBR exists in France but that its frequency is still relatively low (2 to 5% of reactors) and certainly much less important than was first suggested. Serological positivity is more frequent in dairy farms of more than 50 head which include imported Holstein cattle. This result should caution breeders wishing to import cattle which are likely to be positive.
Most of the time, imported animals can be held responsible for infection with IBR but, in some cases, such an origin cannot be incriminated. Serological testings repeated at an interval of 6 to 8 months suggest that infection is rather stationary. However, actual outbreaks of IBR infection have been observed in several cases. The incidence of the disease in French cattle does not appear to have changed radically since 1974; IBR virus can be recognised as cause of clinical disease in 5 to 7% of investigated respiratory outbreaks.
Epidemiological features of infection result in necessary control measures. Imported cattle should be serologically tested in order to prevent further spread of infection and the introduction of possibly virulent virus strains. Bulls have to be examined for antibodies before entrance to artificial insemination stations. In herds known to run the risk of being infected, the losses caused by the disease can be reduced by an inactivated IBR vaccine which is now available commercially in France.
KeywordsDairy Farm Positive Seron Diagnostic Examination Positive Animal Bovine Respiratory Disease
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