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An association of Orf virus infection among sheep and goats with herd health programme in Terengganu state, eastern region of the peninsular Malaysia

Bala, Jamilu Abubakar, Balakrishnan, Krishnan Nair, Abdullah, Ashwaq Ahmed, Adamu, Lawan, Noorzahari, Muhammad Syaafii bin, May, Lau Kah, Mangga, Hassana Kyari, Ghazali, Mohd Termizi, Mohamed, Ramlan Bin, Haron, Abd Wahid, Noordin, Mustapha Mohamed, Lila, Mohd Azmi Mohd
BMC veterinary research 2019 v.15 no.1 pp. 250
Orf virus, animal identification, antibodies, compliance, disease control, disease transmission, farmers, farms, females, financial economics, goats, grazing, health programs, herd health, herd immunity, management systems, milking, risk factors, seroprevalence, sheep, skin lesions, Malaysia
BACKGROUND: Orf virus causes a scabby skin lesions which decreases productivity in small ruminants. The unknown status of this disease in the eastern region of Peninsular Malaysia warrants a study to determine sero-prevalence of orf with regards to farmers’ compliance level towards the Herd Health Program (HHP) programme. RESULTS: Out of 504 animals, 115 were positive for Orf-virus antibodies. An overall prevalence rate of 22.8% indicated a high prevalence of orf disease in this region. It was observed that 25.1% (92/367) of goats were positive and 16.8% (23/137) of sheep sero-converted for Orf virus antibody. Several factors were measured for their possible association with prevalence of Orf virus infection. The prevalence was higher in LY farm, JC breed, kid and female animals, and in the presence of disease lesion. Chi-square analysis showed a significant association of three risk factors which are species, age and sex of the animals (P < 0.05). Notwithstanding, all other variables showed no significant difference (P > 0.05). Farms surveyed usually practised intensive management system, keeping animals in the shade at all time, due to limited availability of suitable land as a free-range grazing area. An interview with small holder farmers revealed a lack of awareness of the main goals of herd health programme. An overall compliance level of 42.7% was observed for all HHP parameters. Among the 14 main components of HHP modules, animal identification had recorded highest compliance level (84.62%) while milking management recorded the least compliance (− 82.69%). That explained why there was a high sporadic prevalence of Orf infection in this region. CONCLUSION: Good herd health supervision is a rehearsal target to prevent an outbreak and the spread of diseases thus reduces economic losses among farmers. Therefore, a good herd health programme should be in place, in order to prevent and control disease transmission as well as to improve herd immunity.