Kenya: Tharaka-Nithi Farmers Battling Livestock Disease Outbreak

16 January 2020

Farmers in Tharaka-Nithi County are counting losses following an outbreak of anthrax, lumpy skin and foot and mouth diseases that have already killed a number of livestock.

The most affected areas are the wet parts of Maara and Chuka/Igambang'ombe constituencies that border Mt Kenya Forest.

Other diseases that have been reported are rabies, contagious caprine pleuropneumonia (CCPP) and sheep and goat pox.

Following the outbreak, the county government, through the department of Livestock and Fisheries, has launched mass vaccination to curb the spread of the diseases and avert further losses.

In a press statement on Thursday by Agriculture Executive Njue Njagi, the reported diseases were termed highly contagious and a threat to livestock production resulting to economic and livelihood losses.

MASS VACCINATION

He said the mass vaccination that started on Monday this week and which will run until March 4 is targeting cattle, pigs, dogs and cats.

The farmers are expected to take their animals to the designated sites nearest to their farms on the announced dates.

Mr Njagi warned locals against eating meat or drinking milk from the sick animals or any other product to avoid falling sick.

"These diseases are dangerous and people must keep off products of the affected animals," he said in the statement.

He said diseases such as anthrax seriously affect people who come into contact with carcasses and advised them to call the county veterinary officer any time they have a sick animal.

Farmers will be required to part with Sh50 for vaccination of every cow and pig and Sh30 for each dog and cat.

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