The cattle keepers in Lakes state’s Awerial County has expressed concern about losing their livestock following the outbreak of an animal disease known as East Coast Fever.
Deng Think is a cattle keeper in the area said has lost 15 cows and several animals from other community members dead of disease confirmed to be East Coast Fever at various villages, including Mingkaman.
East Coast Fever is a lethal disease of cattle caused by the blood parasite and transmitted by the Brown Ear Tick.
He stated that cattle started showing signs of sickness in December, and the treatment they have administered to save the life of animals did not work better.
According to the cattle owner, the disease’s symptom includes cow to develop a high fever, nose mucus, loss of appetite.
Deng claimed to have lost a cow worth 400,000 SSP, and he appeals to veterinarians and partners to provide a sustainable drug that can treat the disease. It’s unclear how many cattle dead so far.
” I don’t really know what can help. We have been trying to treat them with the available drugs for animals, but it’s not working. We don’t understand why doctors are not bringing drugs for this disease.” Deng stated.
Director of the Animal department in Awerial County, James Chuti, has confirmed that fifteen cows have died so far and expects the number to go higher.
He urges pastoralists to keep animals free of ticks to minimize disease transmission through blood parasites as local authorities prepare their response.
“We have got the information about this disease and my office has received at least 15 cows death recorded but I did not yet get some data from many villages which host larger number of cows. so far, we are planning to see alternative ways to save the livestock life because the entire,e communities depend on cattle and if disease wipe them out, it can be a disaster to them” He said.
The veterinary expert said the vaccination campaign launched in November last year didn’t covered all areas due to the vaccine shortage.
James assured cattle owners that his office coordinates with the State head office to provide medicine that cures East Coast Fever.