Animal Health Update: Issue 6


Issue 6

2015 Yearly Disease Summary

Each year the Animal Industry Division investigates hundreds of disease cases reported by labs, veterinarians and animal owners. In 2015, AID responded to a number of equine herpesvirus 1 cases, and worked to monitor and contain emerging disease like canine influenza and avian influenza. In addition, three herds were identified with Bovine Tuberculosis and many herds were tested in connection with a herd found with TB in Texas. It is always important to review the diseases requiring mandatory reporting which are listed on the Michigan Reportable Animal Disease List. You can report diseases to AID by email or phone 800-292-3939. If you have any questions regarding the below disease reports or would like more information, please contact us by email.

Small Animal, Exotic & Equine




Hot Topic:

Flint Water Emergency

In Michigan, all toxicological diseases are reportable to the State Veterinarian; and, any time animals are exposed to lead, there is a possibility it may result in a toxicological disease. Historically, nearly all cases of lead toxicosis reported to AID arise when cattle lick, gnaw or otherwise ingest lead-containing grease, oil, or batteries. The current situation in Flint with lead-contaminated water has presented a vastly different method of potential lead exposure for a more widespread group and type of animals.  

Animal Industry Division, in partnership with private practitioner veterinarians, Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine, MSU Extension, Michigan Veterinary Medical Association, Genesee County Emergency Management, Genesee County Animal Control, Humane Society of Genesee County, and Humane Society of the United States (just to name a few) is actively engaged in responding to this situation. So far, we have found one dog with confirmed lead toxicity and four dogs classified as exposed/probable cases. Here are some of the other activities that we and our partners have undertaken:

  • Contacted veterinarians in Genesee County about the state’s response related to animals.
  • Searched for, and to date, have found no livestock in Flint.
  • Developed guidance for pet owners (found here).
  • Developed guidance for veterinarians (found here).
  • Fielded calls from veterinarians who have patients that are suspect for lead-related toxicological disease. MDARD, with special arrangements, is covering the cost of blood lead testing in these cases when testing is performed at MSU Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health.
  • Initiated a lead-surveillance study in dogs in Flint. On Saturday, February 20, CVM partnered with Genesee County Animal Control to collect blood samples from Flint dogs brought to a rabies vaccination clinic. CVM has additional testing sessions planned in the Flint community.
  • Formed a partnership between Genesee Country and CVM to include certain high-risk dogs in the CVM study. These are dogs from homes with documented very high levels of lead and/or copper in tap water. Service dogs from throughout Flint also may be included in the CVM study.
  • Considered how to support costs of veterinary care for owners needing assistance if pets are found to have a lead-related toxicological disease.

AID will continue to collaborate with our partners in order to work with the residents of Flint to address the needs of the animal population. If you have questions or wish to report a suspect lead-related toxicological disease, contact MDARD at 800-292-3939.

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Contact the Animal Industry Division:

Constitution Hall
525 West Allegan Street
6th Floor, P.O. Box 30017
Lansing, MI 48909


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