Three Canadian pigs have tested positive for Seneca Valley virus at a packing plant in the United States.
The virus is not particularly dangerous to either hogs or people, but is considered alarming because it can easily be mistaken for foot-and-mouth disease which would be devastating.
Foot-and-mouth disease is deadly and highly contagious and if it is ever confirmed in a Canadian animal, would immediately stop all meat and livestock exports.
There would also be tight quarantine zones, including some that would stop all traffic in or out of a property.
The United States Department of Agriculture has alerted the Canadian Food Inspection Agency about its findings and further testing in Canada confirmed it’s at two Ontario hog assembly yards. It could not be confirmed at any place in Manitoba although one of the hogs detected with the virus at the U.S. packing plant was from Manitoba.
The Canadian Pork Council is informing hog farmers that they have an obligation to report any signs of a vesicular virus, such as Seneca Valley virus, to their veterinarian and veterinarians have an obligation to report to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
The council says “although SVV (Seneca Valley virus) is not a reportable disease, its detection will halt the production flow and processing as its clinical signs are similar to foreign vesicular diseases such as foot-and-mouth.
If SVV or any other type of vesicular foreign animal disease is suspected, it is important to immediately report this to your herd veterinarian and the CFIA.
“Any failure to report could lead to missing a potential FMD (foot-and mouth) infection which could have huge impacts for the industry.
“Biosecurity measures should be reviewed and movement from the farm should be halted and samples need to be collected and sent out for proper analysis by CFIA laboratories.
“No sick, lame or animals with active and/or healing vesicular lesions should be sent out and that includes movement to slaughter.
“The CFIA will investigate all suspect cases which may include taking samples to rule out vesicular FADs (foreign animal diseases).
“The test results usually become available within 24 hours from the time the samples reach the CFIA laboratory.