ARCHIVED - CFIA completes testing of recovered sheep

June 21, 2012, Ottawa:

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June 21, 2012, Ottawa: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has finished testing the 26 sheep found at a farm in Grey County, Ontario. Test results are negative for scrapie.

The sheep were among 31 adult sheep illegally removed from a quarantined farm in Eastern Ontario. Efforts to trace the remaining five sheep continue.

These test results are consistent with the CFIA's experience with scrapie in Canada. A typical infected flock or herd sees an infection rate anywhere between three per cent and 30 per cent. Two sheep from the farm in Eastern Ontario had previously tested positive for scrapie.

Scrapie can spread among sheep and goats without showing signs in the infected animals for several years. Unfortunately, all genetically susceptible animals exposed to scrapie must be humanely euthanized to allow for conclusive testing. This approach ensures the disease does not spread within the national flock.

The quarantines will remain in place on both farms while the investigation continues.

The scrapie control measures taken by the CFIA are based on internationally accepted science, and are supported by the Canadian sheep and goat industries.

While there is no known human health risk associated with scrapie, it has serious impacts on sheep and goat production and trade, and the CFIA, with the full support of the livestock industry, aims to eradicate it from Canada.

For information on the police investigation, contact the Northumberland Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Detachment 613-475-1313.

For more information on scrapie:

  • call 1-800-442-2342
  • visit www.inspection.gc.ca

Follow us on Twitter for the latest on animal health: www.twitter.com/CFIA_Animals.

Media enquiries:

CFIA Media Relations
613-773-6600

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