Animal news? It’s complicated. And simple

From Harper’s October Findings, the simple part:

The World Organisation for Animal Health unveiled a new acronym, WOAH.

Good thing they did, because…

Lumpy skin disease was spreading among Gujarati cattle, Rift Valley fever was suspected among Burundian cattle, African swine fever was detected in a Moldovan pig, *an unvaccinated Floridian donkey tested positive for strangles, a miniature filly in Tennessee tested positive for Potomac horse fever, a Germany wild boar tested positive for pseudorabies, and a second Zurich elephant died of herpes. The threat of highly pathogenic avian influenza induced France to launch a vaccination trial among its ducks.

WOAH, I say!

*I cannot help myself, I must, I must — Has anybody pinned down that unvaccinated Floridian donkey? And “the strangles…” Oh, dear. I would so love to leave this without any research to find out what “the strangles” are but my curiosity and dedication to facts leads me to the Veterinary College at the University of California, Davis, for this:

Strangles is a highly contagious bacterial disease caused by Streptococcus equi equi. It is characterized by swelling of the lymph nodes and the formation of abscesses, primarily in the head and neck. Disease severity varies and younger horses often exhibit more severe clinical signs than older horses.

Then I noticed some person, possibly with much the same character of humor as have I, posed the question, “Can humans get strangles?” The answer:

In rare cases, humans have contracted infections from the bacteria that cause Strangles. To prevent human infection, people caring for horses with Strangles should avoid getting any nasal or abscess discharge from the horse on their eyes, nose, or mouth.

Okay, then. We’re all on the same page. Aren’t we?

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