PED pops back up in southwestern Ontario

(Peggy Greb photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

A farrow-to-finish hog operation in southwestern Ontario is home to the province’s 64th on-farm case of porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED), its first such case in almost four months.

The farm, in Middlesex County, reported “clinical signs” of the PED virus (PEDv) and submitted samples for testing Monday. Laboratory confirmation was received Tuesday, Ontario Pork said in a statement Thursday.

The unnamed farmer and his veterinarian “have developed a control and elimination plan for the farm and have notified key service providers,” the provincial hog agency said, thanking the farmer for his “rapid response and transparency.”

However, Ontario Pork added, the farm’s pig transport process was its “most significant risk factor” for the virus.

Ontario Pork urged hog farmers Thursday to review on-farm biosecurity, noting “use of unwashed trucks is a significant risk” for PEDv transmission.

On-farm appearances of PEDv had tapered off in Ontario over the summer and fall following confirmation of the virus’ first appearance in the province — and in Canada — on Jan. 22.

The case confirmed July 21 in Perth County had been Ontario’s first in over a month, following four cases in June, 15 in April and 19 in March.

Colder and wetter weather are believed to increase the risk of the virus spreading. [Related story]

Hog operations reporting PED cases elsewhere in Canada include four in southeastern Manitoba and one in Prince Edward Island. Quebec confirmed its second case earlier this month at a feeding barn in the Monteregie. [Related]

Alberta Pork, in a notice to that province’s producers this week, noted the Monteregie farm had “multiple” buildings but only one barn where hogs showed clinical PEDv signs. Its pigs were sourced in Ontario.

The virus, which is not known to pose any threat to human health or to food safety, causes diarrhea, vomiting and dehydration in affected hogs and is generally fatal in very young piglets. Older hogs usually recover.

In the U.S., where the virus appeared early last year, on-farm cases have since been reported at almost 8,900 farms across 32 states. — Network



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