Pesti des Petitis Ruminants is a highly contagious disease of goats caused by a virus belonging to morbillivirus genus of family “Paramyxoviridae”. Pesti des Petitis Ruminants is an acute or subacute acute viral disease of goats and sheep and literarily means “disastrous diseases of small ruminants” in French.Usually goats are more severely affected than sheep.
In India, Pesti des Petitis Ruminants was first reported in 1987 from Arasur village in Villupuram district of Tamil Nadu, South India (Shalia et al.,1989). Since its first reported occurrence in 1987, Pesti des Petitis Ruminants was thought to be restricted to southern India upto 1993, after which the epidemics of Pesti des Petitis Ruminants devastated large number of small Ruminants from northern India by Nanda (1996).
Since then Pesti des Petitis Ruminants has been reported regularly from different parts of the country. The disease is considered as an endemic disease causing great loss to small ruminants of the country. Now the disease has spread all over India. There is also a common confusion of Pesti des Petitis Ruminants with pneumonic diseases of small ruminants which delays its recognition and preventive measures.
An occurrence of Pesti des Petitis Ruminants (PPR) in young (less than one year of age) and adult Salem Black and Tellicherry goats and in Mecheri Sheep was observed at Mecheri Sheep Research Station, Pottaneri, Salem, Tamil Nadu, India during the summer season.
All the animals had been vaccinated against PPR with live attenuated PPR vaccine. The outbreak occurred one month after introduction of Salem Black goats from the farmer’s flock kept under quarantine which were also vaccinated. Both sheep and goats were kept under the same housing and management conditions.
The migrated animals had been dewormed and were all apparently healthy. The disease was first observed in young Salem Black goats with clinical signs of high fever, dullness, depression, conjunctivitis with ocular and nasal discharge followed by young and adult Tellicherry goats and Mecheri sheep.
The postmortem examination revealed severe ulceration in oral gums, tongue, oesophagus and severe hemorrhages in internal organs and enlargement of the spleen and lymph node.
The samples were collected in apparently healthy, diseased and recovered animals and sent to laboratory for confirmative diagnosis. The laboratory results confirmed the incidence of PPR by complement fixation test.
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