PC Neospora FINAL V1.1 July 2017


Neospora caninum

Control • The first step in controlling neosporosis in an infected herd is to follow the biosecurity measures listed above under “Prevention ”. • There is no need to get rid of existing farm dogs. Even if one of these had been the source of the Neospora infection, it should have stopped shedding oocysts by the time abortions started. Following infection, dogs will shed once for around three weeks, and do not usually shed oocysts again. • If Neospora is diagnosed in a particular animal, at a minimum, any relatives remaining in the herd (grand-dam, dam, siblings and progeny-male or female) should be tested to see if vertical transmission has occurred. • If blood testing all the breeding stock to establish the level of Neospora infection in the herd or to confirm freedom from infection, animals should be blood tested 10 to 4 weeks before calving. Negative animals need a second test 10 to 4 weeks before calving the following year to confirm freedom from disease. Actions in positive herds • In herds with a low prevalence of Neospora -positive animals, all positive animals should be culled. As neosporosis is not spread from cow to cow, culling of lactating animals may be delayed until the end of lactation. • In herds with a high prevalence of Neospora -positive animals, positive animals may be culled over a few years, giving priority to removing positive animals that aborted. - Positive animals that are maintained in the breeding herd (dairy or suckler) should be put in calf to beef bulls and the progeny fattened and slaughtered and not used for breeding. It is important that positive animals should not be sold to other breeding herds. - Replacement heifers should be blood-tested for neosporosis before breeding and only negative animals should be used for breeding; positive animals should be fattened and slaughtered. Negative animals should be retested 10 to 4 weeks before expected calving date to confirm freedom from infection. Embryo Transfer: If embryos are obtained from Neospora -positive animals and transferred into Neospora - negative recipient animals, the progeny will be Neospora -negative. Neospora is a leading cause of abortion in Ireland. Careful management is required to keep it out of uninfected herds and control measures should be implemented in infected herds.


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