Eastern Mirror Desk
Dimapur, April 9: A deadly unknown disease has claimed the lives of several buffaloes in Sochünoma of Medziphema circle in Dimapur district since the previous week. This was confirmed by Dr. Michael Imchen, VAS Veterinary Hospital, Dimapur.
Imchen informed Eastern Mirror that the official report was received on Sunday, April 7; and a team, including himself, visited the affected area on Monday.
“A quick response team from the department of Veterinary and Animal Husbandry rushed up (from Dimapur town) on Monday and found one dead buffalo upon reaching the site,” Imchen informed and reported that at least 10-15 buffaloes have died so far.
Imchen further said that the department headquarters was informed immediately and soon after another team was dispatched from the state’s Elisa laboratory to collect samples and start the diagnosis on Tuesday.
According to a press release from the deputy chief veterinary, Dr. K Thungchamo, a team of ORT doctors lead by deputy CVO, VAS and VFAS from Chief Veterinary Office in Dimapur went to Sheiri Angami village and Sochünoma village on April 8 following reports of cattle death.
It stated that as per the report of the villagers, at least three to five buffaloes die every day and till date, more than 20 have died.
“According to their report, affected buffalo show sign of frothy mouth, difficulty in breathing, high temperature, complete off feed, collapse and die within 2 days,” it stated.
According to Imchen, it is a very contagious disease and if contracted, will result in death within 12 to 48 hours.” Vaccination of live cattle has already started, he added.
Imchen informed that ‘ring vaccination’ would be carried out at four to five nearby villages to avoid further spread of the disease.
“We got news that the epidemic has reached neighbouring areas like Molvom and Chathe so we will be heading to those places also,” informed Imchen.
He further said that the symptoms exhibited by the affected buffaloes were very similar to that of Haemorrhagic septicaemia disease that occurred during the same time of the year in 2016 in Peren killing several buffaloes.
“We have been doing vaccinations and will continue to do so even though this epidemic did not occur last year,” said Imchen. He informed that one of the main reasons why it becomes an epidemic was because the animals are not confined to one space but rather let loose.
“We will be doing a proper lab examination of the samples collected and hopefully in a day or two we will have the results,” said Imchen.
It may be mentioned that after the last major outbreak, the department of V&AH had decided to maintain a fund to meet the needs during emergency epidemics such as this.
The Deputy Commisioner of Dimapur, Kevekha Kevin Zehol, in a separate press release requested the chief veterinary officer to take stock of the epidemic in Khaibung, Chathe, Molvom, Sochünoma and other nearby villages.