Alberta confirmed its second case of porcine epidemic virus yesterday, this one in a 600-head farrow-to-finish hog operation.
Alberta Pork reported the discovery Feb. 21. Location of the affected farm was not disclosed, so it is not known whether it is near the site of the first confirmed Alberta case in a central Alberta farrow-to-finish operation that had 400 animals. The early January discovery was the first incident of PED virus in the province.
“At this time it is uncertain whether the first and second reported cases of PED are linked in any way,” Alberta Pork said in a news release.
The producer group is working with Alberta Agriculture and the chief veterinary officer to investigate the recent outbreak and attempt to keep it from spreading.
“It is especially critical during this outbreak that producers consider enhancing biosecurity on-farm and in animal transportation,” Alberta Pork said.
“Producers are encouraged to submit all swine manifests, including farm-to-farm movements, in a timely manner.”
An investigation into Alberta’s first case of PED did not determine the source of the virus, though testing ruled out introduction from other pigs and from livestock transport vehicles. Tests at swine traffic sites at that time were also negative for the virus.
A Feb. 21 statement from the provincial veterinarian office said pig traffic to and from the recently affected site has been stopped, and enhanced biosecurity has been implemented.
It further said no market access implications are expected as a result of the second case.
PED is highly contagious and causes severe diarrhea and death in suckling pigs. Older animals get milder diarrhea, which affects productivity. The virus does not affect human health.
The virus has now affected pig operations in five provinces and was first found in Canada in 2014.