Common Diseases in Cattle - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment Options
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Common Diseases in Cattle - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment Options

There are many diseases which affect cows. Anaplasmosis, bloat, ringworm and wooden tongue are detailed here. The animal can be saved if treatment is given immediately. Affected cattle should be isolated so that infections do not spread easily. It is imperative that a farm owner be aware of cattle health hazards so that he can save his animals.

Cows are a farmer’s wealth. It is his livelihood. A farmer has to be aware of the common diseases in cattle. Awareness helps in prevention of diseases and helps the farmer to recognize symptoms.

1. Anaplasmosis

Anaplasmosis is a disease which affects cattle. Parasites named anaplasma centrale and marginale cause this ailment. It is not communicable but spreads through ticks, dehorning tools, mosquitoes, instruments which are used to apply tattoo, flies and needles. This disease is common in many parts of the world. The cattle once infected become a permanent carrier. Symptoms of this disease include fever, anemia, loss of weight, inability to breathe normally, lack of harmonization while moving, abortion. If left untreated, the animal can die. Treatments include tetracycline, chlortetracycline and antibiotics. The animal should not be moved unnecessarily because it will cause breathlessness leading to death. Hygienic surroundings will help prevent spreading of this disease.

2. Bloat

Bloat is a common disease in cattle. The condition occurs when the animal is unable to eject gas formed in the rumen. The gases which get ensnared in the animal’s body are converted to froth. Bloat occurs when the animal consumes legumes like clover or alfalfa. In some cases it is also caused due to obstructions in gullet. The symptoms include restlessness, swelling of abdomen, strenuous breathing, trying to defecate frequently, convulsions and collapse. Treatment is done by giving doses of dimethicone for bloat of the frothy type. In cases of gassy type, a tube will help the gas to escape. The veterinarian will have to operate the animal in serious cases.

3. Wooden Tongue

Wooden tongue is an infection which affects the cattle. Certain types of feed, rough food and seeds can cause wounds in tongue. The bacteria which are present in the tongue enter through these wounds. This leads to infection and pus formation. The tongue of the affected animal becomes hard and swollen. The animal will not be able to drink or eat because of acute pain. There will be drooling and the animal will lose weight very soon because of the inability to eat. The symptoms include unusual amount of saliva, pus and weakness. The infection causes tissue deposits on the tongue which makes it hard and still. Treatments include tetracycline and iodine healing. An infected animal should be isolated until cure.

4. Ringworm

A common fungal infection, it affects cattle also. The fungus known as trichophyton verrucosum forms spores which causes hair loss in the form of a ring. This disease is extremely contagious. The symptoms include dry skin, scabs, hair loss and emission of liquid from the patches. The animal does not look healthy. The disease can also affect those who look after the cattle. Ointments and iodine treatment are effective. The spread of infection can be prevented by keeping the premises clean.

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Comments (5)

Thank you for your valuable article.

thank you Roberta

Hmm, wonder if ringworm is present in cowchips.

My husband and I live in cattle country, we have a hobby farm with many animals. One time when for a walk we came upon a small group of cattle including one dead, swollen up like a balloon, it was probably bloat (unless the swelling happened after death) we had to find the nearest home to let them known. Poor thing.

Thanks for this pet treatment article. Thanks for your affectionate friendship and comments.