United States. Bureau of Animal Industry.

Annual report of the Bureau of Animal Industry for the year ... online

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increasing to 3 or 4 teaspoonf uls in the same quantity of milk.

Still another remedy that is reported as beneficial is composed of
salol 2 drams, oxide of bismuth 4 drams, carbonate of lime 1 ounce.
Mix and di\ide into six doses. Give the first two at intervals of two
hours, then give one dose every four hours. Give each dose in a
glass of camomile infusion, and if the calf is weak and exhausted
a<ld half a glass of good wine.

Diarrhea in calves. — Mr. Bartlett Woods, of Crown Point, Ind.,
a correspondent of the Division Of Statistics, requested information
regarding a cure for diarrhea in calves. The following reply was
given:

Reply. — One remedy for diarrhea in calves, which has been used
quite eflEectively in some cases, is as follows: Salol, 2 drams; oxide of
bismuth, 4 drams; carbonate of lime, 1 ounce; mix and di\'ide into
six doses. Give the first two doses at intervals of three hours, then
give one dose every six hours ; these doses to be given in 5 ounces of
camomile infusion. If the calf is weak give in the intervals between
the doses 2 ounces of port wine or 1 ounce of whisky.

Another remedy which is believed to be of special value in cases
where disinfection of the intestinal tract is desired. may be prepared
as follows: Naphthalin, 5 drams; castor oil, one-half pint. Dissolve
the drug in the oil and give a large tablespoonf ul of the mixture three
times a day.

Creolin is another remedy which is of value when administered
internally, and is given in doses of from one-half to 1 dram, dissolved
in water, every three hours, as required.

This disease, as seen in sucking calves, is infectious and conta-
gious, so that calves affected with it should be separated from



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FIFTEENTH ANNUAL REPORT. 537

healthy animals, and the stalls and utensils used should be disin-
fected. A good disinfectant for this purpose is a solution of chloride
of lime (bleaching i)owder), 4 ounces to 1 gallon of water. The bowel
discharge or droppings from the infected calves should be disinfected
by covering with quicklime.

AA^arts on a calf. — I have a calf affected witli what is in this neigh-
borhood called *' the warts," and I wish to know if there is any cure
for them. The warts are on the nose and mouth and seem to be
increasing in number. Kindly let me know if there is any way to
get rid of them.— (P. F. J., Waldmp, Fa., Nov, 7, 1898,)

Reply. — One or more applications of a strong solution of creolin,
or any of the carbolic sheep dips on the market, will as a rule remove
warts of the kind you describe. A solution of 1 to 4 may be used to
good effect, applied^ to the warts with a stiff brush. If proper care is
taken to apply the remedy exclusively to the warts without touching
the surrounding skin, a solution of 1 to 2, or even the undiluted
preparation, may be used.

DISEASES OF HORSES AND MT7LES.

Cerebro-spinal meningitis in horses. — At the instance of many
of our planters and stockmen I write you to saj^ that the horses of
this coast country are dying by the thousand with something like the
"blind staggers," or, as it is called by the Galveston veterinary sur-
geon, meningitis. The horses seem to be affected with something
like blindness and a turning to one side when they attempt to walk,
and seem to be wholly unconscious of where they are going, and will
run over anything that may be before them, if possfble. They live
from one to four days after being attacked, and we are unable to find
anything that does them any good ; in fact, we have no knowledge of
any horse sui'viving. Our object in writing this letter is to get any
information you may be able to give that will help our poor people to
save their horses. We will thank you for such information. — (T. P.,
Vdasco, Tex., Oct 23, 1897.)

There is a disease locally known as "sleepy staggers" among the
horses here that is killing them off like rats. So far as I know no
horse has recovered that has had the disease. We know nothing of
the cause of the disease. The principal symptom is that the horse
backs up against the side of the stable, and if i)ossible, braces the head
against something in front. It is all over this part of the State, and is
still spreading. — {J. A. S., Iowa, La., Sept. 6, 1898.)

Reply. — No remedy has been discovered for cerebro-spinal menin-
gitis, which is probably the disease affecting horses in your vicinity.
It is a miasmatic, infectious, noncontagious disease, but as yet the
specific nature of the infectious agent has not been discovered.
Probably the disease is contracted by animals drinking out of stag-
nant pools which contain decomposing vegetable matter, and one of
the first precautions to be taken for prevention is to stop animals
from drinking from such pools or streams. Whenever possible only
good well water should be provided. With a little observation it can



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538 BUREAU OP ANIHAL INDUSTRY.

probably be determined which are infected pools. In this x>articalar
outbreak only horses seem to be affected, but both cattle and sheep
are susceptible to the disease, and preventive measures should include
these animals as well. The carcasses of all stock that die from this
disease should be destroyed by burying them and covering with lime,
or, where it can be done,' burning the carcasses.. Any stables where
infected stock have been should be disinfected, since this is an infec-
tious disease and other animals may contract it from being placed in
infected stables or yards.

• The usual mortality from this disease is great, being as high as 90
per cent. The outbreak you report seems especially virulent, so that
under these circumstances probably little benefit can result from
treatment. Some benefit may be derived from the application of a
strong fly blister to the top of the head, extending from between the
ears backward for a distance of about six inches. Also give the ani-
mal a strong laxative of either Barbados aloes or raw linseed oil.

Azoturia and distemper in horses. — I would like very much to
have some advice as to how to prevent and cure the diseases known
as distemper and azoturia. — (Jf. H, D., Ogden, Iowa.)

Reply. — The disease known as distemper, or "strangles," is infec-
tious, and in stables where it is prevalent efforts should be made to
disinfect the stalls and utensils used about the infected animals,
and such animals should be isolated and put under treatment. In
ordinary cases of this disease but little treatment is required beyond
keeping the animals comfortable and protecting them from cold. It
is often necessary, however, to apply poultices to the swelling which
occurs between the branches of the lower jaw, and when an abscess
is formed to lance it for the escape of the pus. There are other cases,
however, in which the swelling may appear at different parts of the
body and requii-e special treatment by a competent veterinary
surgeon.

The causes of azoturia are not so well understood, but it is sop-
posed bo be connected with high feeding, especially when horses are
fed on highly nutritious food, and during a i)eriod of rest in the
stall under full rations. The disease is never seen at pasture, rarely
under constant daily work, even if the feeding be high. Prevention
consists in restricting the diet and giving daily exercise when horses
are not at work. A horse that is subject to attacks should not be left
idle for a single day in the stall ; but if required to be kept at rest,
should be given only a small amount of food, and also a laxative—
one-half to 1 pound of Glauber's salts the first day and one-fourth
I)ound each day thereafter. The treatment required for a horse
attacked with this disease varies in different cases and should only
be undertaken by a specialist who has had experience with it or has
made a study of the disease and the medicines required.



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FIFTEENTH ANNUAL REPORT. . 539

Millet disease of horses. — A year ago I had a mare that was with
foal to become lame in one of her hind legs so that at last she was
unable to get up. She foaled while she was down, the colt dying the
next day. She got up after a few days and seemed to be getting bet-
ter when she was taken with a swelling of all her legs, with a con-
sequent stiffness of all her limbs, so that she was unable to move.
After H few days the swelling subsided in three of her legs, but
remained in the fourth one all summer till she died in tlie fall
This spring I had another mare with foal, and to prevent a recurrence
of the same affection in this one I worked her to three weeks before she
dropped her colt, the one of last year not having been worked and in
good flesh. This mare swelled in all her legs a few days before foal-
ing and could hardly get around; but she became all right apparently
two or three days after foaling. At the end of the week she, too,
became lame in one of her hind legs, so that when sh(^ lies down she
is unable to get up without help. The lame leg is not swelled at all,
but the other leg is considerably enlarged, especially at the hock. I
feed my horses millet, the only hay I have, but they have the range
of a st^lk field. My neighbors, almost without exception, say that
the millet is the cause of my trouble. I have fed this hay for the
last eight years and have had no trouble till last year. This year my
millet did not do very well, crab grass taking its place, so that fully
75 per cent of the hay is crab grass. Some of my neighbors say that I
should not feed millet too green, while others say that it is the seed that
affects the horses, so I do not know which to believe. I had a suck-
ing colt get out every day and feed on the ripe seed Jieads of a patch
of this hay. I could not see that it hurt him, and to-day he is as
good a horse as there is in the country. If you can enlighten me
as to the cause of the trouble among my horses or can tell me the
truth as to the effect of millet on a horse's constitution, I shall be
greatly obliged.— (i^. F. C, Onaga, Kans., Apr. 2d, 1897.)

Reply. — The symptoms 3^011 describe are veiy similar to those
described for horses affected with "millet disease." This disease has
been studied by the veterinarian of the North Dakota Agricultural
Exi)eriment Station, Dr. T. D. Hinebaugh, at Fargo, and the conclusion
he reached in the bulletin recently published on this subject is that his
experiments **have thoroughly demonstrated that millet, when used
exclusively as a coarse food, is injurious to horses, first, in i)roducing
an increased action of the kidneys; second, in causing lameness and
swelling of the joints; third, in producing infusion of blood into the
joints, and fourth, in destroying the texture of the bone, rendering
it softer and less tenacious, so that tnxction causes the ligaments and
muscles to be torn loose." It has not been determined, to my knowl-
edge, in what stage of growth the millet is most injurious, nor has
it been determined whether the injurious substances are contained
in the millet seed or in the stalk when green or imperfectly grown.
The crab grass, which you state as making up a large i>ercentage of
the fodder cut from your field, contains very little nutriment, and it
may be that the horses suffered from not being able to obtain nour-
ishment enough from this poor grass, instead of being affected by
any substances in the grass itself; but from the investigation and



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540 . BUREAU OP ANIMAL INDUSTRY.

observation of a large number of i)eople who have used millet as a
food for horses, it seems to be established that bad effects come from
the use of it exclusively as a coarse food.

Osteoporosis. — I write for information with reference to a horse
which I have, 6 years of age. In January we noticed that she was
not doing well and discovered many little handfuls of hay partly
masticated which she had dropped from her mouth and which showed
a slight discharge from the head; hair looked rough, no life, and with
this condition a swelling of the nostrils was noticeable. A local vet-
erinarian pronounced it a case of "big head," which I have been
unable to learn anything about. At this late day she is looking
better, her hair commences to brighten, she is eating better and swal-
lows her food, dropping less on the floor, and commences to show
some little life, trots about, has shed her hair, but the enlargement of
the head is about the same. — (O. J, W,, Amity vUle, N. K, Ju?i€ ^,
1898,)

Reply. — The horse is probably affected with osteoporosis. The
nature of the disea.se is not well understood, consequently the methods
of treatment as a rule are not successful. It is usually advised to
give lime salts, especially the phosphates of lime, and in some cas^
it seems to cause an improvement. It has been recommended and
found useful in some cases to give horses suffering from this affection
limewater to drink. This can be prepared by placing a bushel of
quicklime in a barrel which is water-tight, then fill the barrel with
water, and allow the horse to drink out of the barrel as soon as the
lime has settled, a new supply of water to be put into the barrel as
required. It is necessary to add the water carefully to the quicklime
and in small quantities at first.

Additional, information. — Later on a second hoi'se belonging to
this gentleman was affected with the same disease. On August 4
the Bureau submitted to its correspondent a series of questions
designed to bring out the circumstances surrounding tliis disease,
and the reply follows:

The two horses which were affected with osteoporosis were of
llambletonian stock; on the sire's side of Mambrino Dudley, of
General Tracy's stock farm, and on the dam's side Winthrop Morrell.
The dam I owned for about eleven yeara and she was strong and
hearty past twenty. I knew of the stock of the sire and dam for
some ten years and never heard of any sickness of this nature. The
horse was foaled in March, 1890, the mare in 1892. AVTien the horse
was i) and the mare 4 they were strong, active, and full of endurance.
The next year, when 7 and 5, there seemed to be a loss of vitality
as I i*ecall their condition. They did not stand their drives well, and
there was a shifting lameness which we were unable to locate — that
is, during the season one year ago — so that I arranged to turn the
mare out in the yard for three months, intending to take her up the
first of January and turn out the horse. But on the first of January
her coat was dead, and when I took her up she had no life, was thin
and not eating well, so that after driving her two or three times!
again turned her out and called in some home talent to ascertain



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FIFTEENTH ANNUAL EEPOHT. 541

what was the trouble. He filed her teeth. Along in March a man
saw her who recognized enlargement of the head. Although this had
• been present for many weeks previously, I failed to recognize it, as I
had never seen or heard of the disease before. For some time she
had been partially chewing her food and dropping it at her feet. The
bones of the head, especially the superior and maxillary, continued
to enlarge, and she continued to "run down" until about six weeks
ago. After hearing from you that there was practically no help for
her I shot her. We saved the bones of the skull, in which we found
the two bones specified very much enlarged and pliable, and when
broken they looked like rotten maple more nearly than anything else
I can think of. The other horse's head was noticed to be enlarging
after showing the other symptoms for several months, and he was
also shot.

I believe that the disease in each case developed in a year and a
half to two years, and that the first sjrmptom was a shifting lameness.
The horse had been used in light driving only on the road, and very
moderate at that. The stable is a wooden building on sandy soil,
with ventilation underneath the floors and into the attic of the barn
from the box stalls in which the horses were kept. The water supply
is from a driven well near the barn in sandy soil. We have an abun-
dance of water only about 10 feet from the surface.

Three other horses have been kept in the same barn with these.
Two of them are three or four years older than the affected horses,
while one is nearing twenty and has been kept in this barn many
years. The other horses are and have been strong and well.

"Wind gall.** — I have a fine young mule which has a wind gall on
the inside of the hind leg near the large pastern joint. It is large
and soft. Will you please give me a remedy for it? — (S, S. S. , Stor&-
vQley Ga,, August i, 1898,)

Reply. — The so-called ** wind-gall" can sometimes be removed in
recent cases by the application of a smart blister, and subsequently
bandaging very tightly while the animal is in the stable. There is
no treatment except a surgical operation which cau remove them
after they have become chronic. The operation should not be per-
formed by anyone except an expert veterinary surgeon.

Shortening of the tendons. — About a year ago my mule, five or six
years old, became lame in her left foot, and since then the disease
has caused her to walk more and more on the toe or point of her foot
till now she walks that way altogether. No swelling exists to any
extent, nor does marked tenderness exist. All other feet are healthy,
and otherwise she is in a healthy condition. This year she has plowed.
Please advise me as to the usual cause of said trouble and the best
plan for effecting a cure. I have been considering the advisability of
performing tenotomy, but do not know whether to cut part of the
tendon above the ankle joint or the tendons below the joint. The
pathology, diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment are desired, and I will
thank you for the information. — {W. A, i?., Oakridge, La,y July
22, 1898.)

Reply. — There are many conditions which shorten the tendons,
and it would be quite impossible to make a satisfactory diagnosis of



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542 BUREAU OF ANIMAL INDUSTBY.

the ease to which you refer without an opportunity to examine the
animal. This condition often arises from traumatic causes, such as
sprain, violent overexertion, lacerations, or contusions of the tendons;
or it may arise from lesions in oUier parts of the limb, as of the foot
or digital region proper, such as bad feet, navicular disease, contrac-
tion of the heels, corns, quarter or toe cracks, quittors, deep punc-
tured wounds, and quite frequently ringbones or other exostoses.
One method of treatment is to place upon the foot a shoe with a long
toe. This causes a sti*etching of the tendons, and may bring the foot
into position. As you suggest, the operation known as tenotomy is
sometimes performed for the relief of this condition, and in most
cases the tendons are cut between the knee and the fetlock. For a
description of the operation I would refer you to Professor Liautaixi's
Manual of Operative Veterinary Surgery, which is almost the only
work on veterinary surgery published in the English language in
which the method is fullj^ described.

Elevations in skin under collar and saddle. — I have a blooded
mare that is troubled with a peculiar cutaneous affection. Bumps
about the size of chestnuts appear on the point of the shoulders, along
the neck under the mane, and on the back where the saddle blanket
touches. They are not sore and do not itch, and otherwise the mare
has remained in fine health. They resemble the "wolf" so often
found in the back of cows. I could not cure the spot under the collar,
as it was suppurating, until I stopped using the mare. After she had
two and a half months of leisure I find the bumps are still present,
and wherever the harness rests they immediately become big, ngly
suppurating sores. I use a fell saddlecloth one-half inch thick and
very soft, but the bumps continue to come. The mare is not galled
or mistreated, and she is in good condition. — (C, H. P., Warrentoih
N. a, Oct 29, 1898,)

Reply. — I am unable, without an opportunity to examine the mare
to which you refer, to state the exact nature of the skin disease
from which she is suffering. As you state that the elevations in the
skin occur where she is chafed by the collar or saddle pad, I would
advise that each time after using the animal the skin be washed with
either of the following solutions: Salt water (one-half ounce to the
quart) ; extract of witch-hazel ; a weak solution of oak bark or cam-
phorated spirits. When the surface is raw it may be beneficial to
apply either oxide of zinc, lycopodium, powdered starch, or smear the
surface with vaseline, or with 1 ounce of vaseline intimately mixed
with one-half dram each of sugar of lead and opium. The mare
might also receive twice daily with her feed one-half ounce cream of
tartar or a teaspoonf ul of carbonate of soda.

DISEASES OF SHEEP.

Grub in the head of sheep. — I have some sheep with some disease of
the head — running at the nose, difficult of breathing, etc. Have lost
several. Will you kindly advise me of some treatment ? — ( W, D. /?.»
Eubermonty Va,y July 22^ 1897.)



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FIFTEENTH ANNUAL REPORT. 643

Reply. — One cause of running at the nose in sheep is from grub in
the head, which comes from the lary» of CEstrus ovis that lives in
the nasal passages and causes inflammation and discharge from the
nose. This parasite develops from eggs which are deposited by the
sheep gadfly and hatch into the grub. There are several methods of
treating the disease, but none of them are very effective, and most
authorities recommend preventive measures instead. Such measures
consist in smearing the sheep's nose with a mixture of equal parts of
pine tar and grease or of pine tar and fish oil. This may be applied to
the nose with a brush or the mixture may be smeared upon the troughs
where the sheep will get it upon the nose while feeding. Another
mixture which is recommended is to take beeswax 1 pound, linseed
oil 1 pint, and carbolic acid 4 ounces; melt the wax and oil together,
adding 2 ounces of common rosin, then, as it cools, stir in the carbolic
acid. This should be rubbed over the face and nose once in two or
three days during the months of July and August. Some sheep
breeders use a cover made of canvas, which is tied over the face of
the sheep and smeared with the above mixture or with a mixture of
asafetida and tallow. This should be hung in such a way that it
will not interfere with sight or grazing and yet protect the animal
against the fly. Another method of treating affected sheep is by
fumigation with tobacco, the process being described as follows:
"One person holds the head of the sheep in a convenient position in,
front of the operator. The latter, having a pipe half filled with
tobacco and kindled in the usual manner, places one or two folds of a
handkerchief over the opening of the bowl then passes the stem a
good way up the nostril, applies his moutli to the covered bowl, and
blows vigorously through the handkerchief. When this has continued
for a few seconds the pii)e is withdrawn and the operation repeated
in the other nostril." Another method is by fumigation with sulphur.
Confine the sheep in a small room and throw the sulphur upon a bed
of coals. A person should I'emain in the room with the sheep, and
when the fumes become painful to the person the door should be
opened to prevent suffocation and injury. The fumigation should
be repeated at intervals of two or three days.

Flukes in sheep — Intestinal woFcns of sheep — Grubs in the
nose of sheep. — Will 5'ou kindly inform me how liver flukes affect
sheep and what is the remedy for the disease? I should also like to
know what should be given for sheep worms in the intestines, and
what length of time elapses after the fly lays the eggs in the sheep's
nostril before the worm crawls up into the head and kills the sheep.
In several flocks here the bowels of some sheep are very loose and
other sheep run at the nose. The bowels of the latter are all right,
but they will not fatten, though they eat heartily. — ( W, S., Leesburg,
Va,y Jan. i, 1897.)

Reply. — Sheep affected with fluke disease first improve in con-
dition. This improvement, however, does not last long, for they soon



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544 BUREAU OF ANIMAL INDUSTRY.

begin to grow thin again, although they retain their appetites. They
finally become very much emaciated, lose part of their wool, and show
edematous swellings under the jaw, and distended abdomen. Ewes



Online LibraryUnited States. Bureau of Animal IndustryAnnual report of the Bureau of Animal Industry for the year ... → online text (page 58 of 69)