How to spot lumpy skin disease, what to do if you suspect it and measures to prevent its spread.
Lumpy skin disease affects cattle and water buffalo. Humans aren’t affected.
It has never been present in Great Britain.
Lumpy skin disease is a notifiable disease. That means if you suspect it you must tell the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) immediately. Failure to do so is an offence.
How to spot lumpy skin disease
Infected cattle and water buffalo may have a fever and their milk production may fall. Other signs may include:
- nodules: small bumps beneath the skin in the nose, mouth and on the body
- yellowish-grey lesions (damage to the skin) on the tongue
- swollen and tender udder or testicles
- discharge from the eye and nose
- salivation from the mouth
- bulls becoming sterile and cows having abortions
- swollen lymph nodes, for example beneath the neck
The nodules may form a hardened crust, which carries the infection.
How lumpy skin disease is spread
Lumpy skin disease is thought to be spread by biting flies and mosquitoes, which feed on the skin lesions.
Minor routes of infection are close contact with infected animals and contaminated food and water.
Preventing and controlling lumpy skin disease
You can help prevent disease by practising practising strict biosecurity on your premises.
If you report suspicion of lumpy skin disease APHA vets will investigate.
If lumpy skin disease is confirmed the outbreak will be controlled in line with the contingency plan for exotic notifiable diseases.
Further information on prevention and control
Legislation relating to lumpy skin disease
Lumpy skin disease is covered by the Specified Diseases (Notification and Slaughter) Order 1992 and the Specified Diseases (Notification) Order 1996..
Published: 26 August 2014
Updated: 1 October 2014
- AHVLA documents have been re-assigned to the new Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).
- First published.