Lancaster farming. (Lancaster, Pa., etc.) 1955-current, July 12, 1975, Image 62

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    62—Uncaster Farming, Saturday. July 12, 1975
Using Sentinel Pigs
To Check Swine Flu
Periodic monitoring of a
few in-herd "sentinel” pigs
can alert the practicing
veterinarian to influenza
like illness beofre the oc
currence of losses in young
Piga-
Supportive treatment that
may prevent death losses in
young pigs should be
initiated as soon as symp
toms such as coughing and
labored breathing are
noticed, microbiologist
Eugene C. Pirtle of USDA’s
Agricultural Research
Service points out. Swine
influenza is not always
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LANCASTER COUNTY FARM SUPPLY
readily differentiated from
other diseases by outward
signs. But infected animals
can be identified by
laboratory testa.
Swine Influenza, com
monly known as hog "flu,”
strikes suddenly, usually
occurs in fall and winter,
normally involves all of the
susceptible animals within a
herd, and subsides after a
few days. The illness causes
weight loss, reduced gains,
and occasionally death. No
effective preventive
measures are available.
Collecting blood samples
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FILL OUT THE COUPON
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for antibody teats and ob
taining nasal swabs
periodocally on all animals
would be impractical in
herds of several hundred to
several thousand pigs. Since
an entire herd is usually
affected, Dr. Plrtle
evaluated the use of
representative, or “sen
tinel” pigs in surveillance
for influenza-llke Illness.
Dr. Prltle, stationed at the
National Animal Disease
Center, Ames, lowa, con
ducted the study in five lowa
feeder herds with a total of
about 7,000 pigs.
Veterinarians in large
animal practice assisted him
in locating herds in which
signs of swine influenza had
not been reported in the fall
months before the study.
On the first visit to each
farm, Dr. Pirtle obtained
nasal swabs for isolation of
swine influenza virus, as
well as blood samples for use
in hemmagglutination
inhibition tests from each of
20 “sentinel” pigs. Dr. Pirtle
took second blood samples
from six of the “sentinel”
pigs in each herd for hem
magglutination-inhibition
tests 3 weeks later if the
virus was isolated, or 6
weeks later it if was not. The
hemmagglutination-
inhibition test detects
specific antibodies to the
virus within 2 to 3 weeks
after initial infection.
Dr. Pirtle chose “sentinel”
pigs weighing 50 to 60
pounds, or 9 to 10 weeks old,
because they should no
longer be protected by an
tibody passively acquired
from the sows. These pigs
should be susceptible to
infection and are likely to
remain in the herd until they
reach market weight.
Typical signs of swine
influenza were seen in Herds
SERVING THE LANCASTER FARMER
ON THE FARM
ANIMAL HEALTH
WITH:
HARDWARE
AND
GENERAL SUPPLIES
"NOW SETTING UP ROUTES"
1 and 2 after these herds
were selected for sur
veillance, but approximately
48 hours before the first
scheduled visit. Diagnosis
was confirmed directly by
virus isolation and indirectly
by a rise in specific antibody
between the first and second
visits.
Tests made after the first
visit to Herd 3 indicated that
it had previously been in
fected, even though signs of
illness were not reported.
Antibody was detected
although the virus was not
isolated. Antibody was still
Mt. Joy
Cooking dub
The Mt. Joy 4-H Cooking
Club met recently at the St.
Marks Church of God. Of
ficers elected were: Jan
Breneman, president; Robin
Bricker, vice-president;
Penny Sumpman, treasurer;
Cindy Peifer, song leader
and Loei Jo Grubb, game
leader.
Leaders of the club are
Mary Sweigart and Nancy
Helm.
Beverly Kreider
News Reporter
LANCASTER
COUNTY
FARM
SUPPLY
j NAME
j ADDRESS
j PHONE
i Please Check Box Pertaining to Livestock
I Dairy I I Poultry ' iSwine l lOlher
present in low levels in
scrum samples collected 6
weeks later.
Herds 4 and 5 showed no
signs of illness during the 6-
wcek surveillance, virus was
not isolated, nor were
measurable levels of an
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tibody detected. Had either
of theao herds become in*
fected with the virus in the
first 4 weeks of surveillance,
Dr.Plrtle aays that specific
antibody should have been
detected In blood samples
taken at the second visit.
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