BENGALURU/CHIKKABALLAPUR: The Animal Husbandry Department has directed its officials in all districts to immediately report any outbreak of anthrax, a bacterial infection affecting cattle.
The directive comes following the deaths of two heads of cattle to the disease in Gowribidanur and Srinivasatarahalli of Chikkaballapur district on Wednesday.
P T Sreenivas, Deputy Director, Animal Disease Surveillance cell of the department, told Express that veterinarians confirm an outbreak of the disease when they find blood oozing from the mouth, nose and other natural openings of the dead animals.
He said, “Normally, if there is an outbreak of anthrax, the bacteria will kill the animal, but will also leave spores. These spores, if exposed to air, will survive for over 40 years and may cause infection in healthy animals and can be a risk to human health. Hence, after an outbreak is confirmed, animals within a radius of 10 km should be vaccinated.”
The department has given standing instructions to all veterinarians to inspect animals for the disease and advise cattle and sheep owners to dispose of the carcasses with caution, he said.
“The owners may sell the dead animal without knowing the potential danger it poses; this is wrong. The animal has to be buried at a depth of 15 feet. All equipment used to carry the animal, like rope and logs, should also be buried and covered in limestone to stop the spread of infection,” Dr Gayathri, Assistant Director, Animal Disease Surveillance of the department, said.