Saturday, December 9, 2017
Wildlife at risk around the globe because of threat of canine distemper and scientists say vaccinating endangered carnivores of increasing importance.Experts from around the world focused on the threat that canine distemper virus poses to the conservation of increasingly fragmented populations of threatened carnivores. The canine distemper has been known for many years as a problem affecting domestic dogs, the virus has been appearing in new areas and causing disease and mortality in a wide range of wildlife species, including tigers and lions. In fact, many experts agree that the virus should not be called “canine distemper” virus at all, given the diversity of species it infects. The previous attempts to manage the risk of infectious disease to wild carnivore conservation have mostly focused on vaccination of domestic dogs. While this approach benefits the dogs themselves (and in the case of rabies, can be crucial to protecting local people), it often fails to prevent infections in threatened species that share their environment. This seems to be due to the presence of abundant, small-bodied wild carnivores that act as an alternative reservoir of infection. Wildlife at risk around the globe because of threat of canine distemper.