The Minnesota Board of Animal Health is asking livestock producers to be on the lookout for cases of anthrax, after confirmed cattle deaths from the disease in South Dakota. Doctor Courtney Wheeler says, “We often see higher incidence of anthrax in areas with heavy flooding, excavation or following heavy rainstorms.” Anthrax most commonly affects cattle, sheep and goats and is almost always fatal.
Wheeler says, “If any producer is suspicious of anthrax on their premises, if they find animals that have suddenly died of unknown causes, we encourage them to contact their herd veterinarian immediately, and reports any concerns to our agency as well.” She adds producers in areas where anthrax has been previously identified should vaccinate their animals.
The last confirmed case of anthrax in Minnesota was in June 2013. Since the year 2000, anthrax has only been found in northwestern Minnesota. All confirmed cases must be reported to the Minnesota Board of Animal Health. People are susceptible to this disease and should contact their health care provider if concerned about their health or exposure.