Recurrent outbreaks of lumpy skin disease and its economic impact on a dairy farm in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria
Lumpy skin disease (LSD) is an acute, severe and economically important transboundary disease of cattle caused by LSD virus (LSDV). Suspected outbreaks of LSD are frequently reported in Nigeria, but laboratory diagnosis is seldom carried out and the economic impact of the disease is unknown. This study investigated suspected recurrent outbreaks of LSD and its economic impact on a dairy farm. A dairy farm in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria, experienced morbidity and mortality amongst Holstein Friesian (HF) calves as a result of skin infection suspected to be LSD in the year 2010, 2013-2014. LSD was tentatively diagnosed and skin biopsies samples were collected for laboratory investigation. The samples were subjected to DNA extraction and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Economic losses were determined based on mortality of the HF recorded during the LSD outbreaks. Clinical signs observed were fever, nodular skin lesions and oedema of the dewlap. LSDV was detected by PCR in 100% (4/4) of the samples collected. In 2013, Farm records showed highest morbidity of 14.81% (36/243) and mortality of 5.3% (13/243). Twenty-three (23) HF calves died during repeated outbreaks of LSD with estimated value of N3, 180, 000 ($17,377.05). LSD is a devastating disease and a threat to the fledgling dairy industry in Nigeria. Diagnosis of LSD in affected animals was confirmed based on clinical signs and PCR results. Huge economic losses were incurred by the dairy farm as a result of the LSD outbreaks. Livestock farmers should routinely vaccinate their cattle against LSD to forestall economic losses.
Keywords: Dairy farm, Holstein Friesian, Lumpy skin disease, polymerase chain reaction, Nigeria