Vesicular stomatitis virus confirmed in some Kansas animals

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A disease that causes blister-like sores on the mouths of horses and other livestock has spread to Kansas, marking it the eighth state where it has been detected.

In a news release on Thursday, The Kansas Department of Agriculture announced that the vesicular stomatitis virus has been confirmed in horses at a private residence in Sherman County, near the Colorado border. The animals have been quarantined.

WDAF reports that the virus sickens horses, cattle, sheep, goats, swine, llamas and alpacas. Symptoms include excessive salivation, lesions, lack of appetite and lameness. Insects transmit the virus.

Humans can become infected while handling sick animals and develop flu-like symptoms, but it is rare. The virus also has been detected in areas of Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.

Any person who suspects that their animals may have VSV should contact their local veterinarian or state animal health official.