20141106 Crypto FINAL


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Cryptosporidiosis in neonatal calves Cryptosporidiosis: An important enteric protozoan disease in newborn calves

Frequency of Enteropathogens

Cryptosporidium Rotavirus Salmonella Ecoli K99 Coronavirus None Detected


The relative frequency of enteropathogens identifed on post- mortem submissions of calves less than one month of age to DAFM RVLs during 2012. Source: All-island Animal Disease Surveillance Report 2012: A joint AFBI / DAFM Veterinary Laboratories publication



4% 3% 2%

Causal agent: Cryptosporidium parvum, a small single cell organism which causes damage to the cells of the distal end of the small intestine, resulting in mild to severe diarrhoea. It is highly infectious and is very difficult to eradicate once established as the oocyst infective stage is resistant to inactivation by many of the disinfectants commonly used on Irish farms.

Age of affected animals: 1-4 week old calves (infected calves may or may not show signs of disease)

Typical disease in: 7-13 day old calves Inaffectedherdswithapure C. parvum infectionmorbidity is high but mortalities are usually low. However, severe cases may result in death. In situations where there is concurrent infection with another neonatal enteric pathogen, usually rotavirus, mortalities are high. Mixed infections are particularly common amongst calves and disease tends to be more common in calves that have received inadequate colostrum. a. Lethargy/weakness b. Profuse watery diarrhoea with strands of mucus; scouring may last 5-12 days. Typically it is 6 days before calves recover their appetite for milk. Scouring from a mixed infection is usually more severe and often fatal c. Dehydration Clinical signs of disease:

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