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Alert - Avian influenza in dairy cattle


An outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) has been identified in dairy cattle, triggering a unified response from veterinarians, dairy industry representatives, and state and federal authorities. While the extent of the outbreak is still being assessed, collaborative efforts are underway to investigate and manage the situation. 

HPAI, typically affecting birds and poultry, has now been confirmed in dairy cattle herds, marking a rare occurrence in U.S. ruminants. Initial reports indicate symptoms such as reduced feed intake and milk production in affected animals, with around 10% of milking cows exhibiting signs of illness. Fortunately, no fatalities have been reported, and affected cattle are showing signs of recovery within a few weeks under proper care. 

To ensure consumer safety, strict food safety measures are in place for milk and meat products. Pasteurized milk and thoroughly cooked meat remain safe for consumption, adhering to established federal and state regulations. 

The American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) is actively monitoring the situation and disseminating accurate information to its members and the public. Effective collaboration and ongoing vigilance are crucial in addressing and containing the spread of avian influenza in dairy cattle.

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