Contagious bovine pleuro-pneumonia: how to spot and report it

How to spot contagious bovine pleuro-pneumonia (CBPP), what to do if you suspect it and measures to prevent its spread.

Applies to England, Scotland and Wales

CBPP affects cattle.

Humans aren’t affected.

The last outbreak in Great Britain was in 1898.

CBPP is a notifiable animal disease. If you suspect it you must report it immediately by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301. In Wales, contact 0300 303 8268. In Scotland, contact your local Field Services Office. Failure to do so is an offence.

How to spot CBPP

Infected cattle have difficulty breathing. Other clinical signs include:

  • dry husky cough, especially when the animal first gets on its feet or is made to run
  • grunting or signs of pain if pressure applied to the ribs
  • fever
  • nasal discharges
  • anorexia

In severe cases the animal’s breathing is rapid, movement of the sides is increased and animals stand with feet wide apart to aid breathing.

Some animals may die. Others appear to recover but can remain infectious for up to 3 years.

How CBPP is spread

CBPP is spread by direct contact with an infected animal, through infected droplets in the breath.

Preventing and controlling CBPP

You can help prevent disease by practising strict biosecurity on your premises.

If you report suspicion of CBPP, APHA vets will investigate.

If CBPP is confirmed, the outbreak will be controlled in line with the contingency plan for exotic notifiable diseases.

Further information on prevention and control

Controls to prevent disease

What happens when a notifiable disease is suspected or confirmed

Legislation relating to CBPP

CBPP is covered by the Animal Health Act 1981 and the Pleuro-pneumonia Order of 1928

CBPP is also covered by EU Directive 82/894

Published 26 August 2014
Last updated 18 October 2018 + show all updates
  1. Contact details for reporting notifiable disease updated

  2. AHVLA documents have been re-assigned to the new Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).

  3. First published.