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Northern Ireland urges vigilance following Schmallenberg reports
Signs of SBV in cattle include fever, inappetence and a reduced milk yield.
Fourteen cases have been presented for testing

Farmers in Northern Ireland are being urged to be vigilant for signs of Schmallenberg virus (SBV) after 14 cases were presented to the Agro-Food and Biosciences Institute for testing.

Speaking to Farmers Weekly, Ulster Farmers’ Union president Barclay Bell said: “It is concerning that there are a growing number of reports of this virus being found in Northern Ireland. It is an awful situation for any farmer. No one wants to see Schmallenberg on their farm.”

Although SBV is not a notifiable disease in Northern Ireland, the government is advising farmers to approach their vet if they spot any signs of the disease in their sheep or cattle. These include fever, inappetence, a reduced milk yield and diarrhoea.

SBV first emerged in November 2011 and has since spread throughout Europe. It is transmitted by biting midges and causes severe deformities in calves, lambs and kids.

Sheep are most at risk of catching SBV in their second month of pregnancy, whilst cattle are more likely to contract the disease during their third to fifth month of pregnancy. So far this year, there have not been any confirmed cases of the disease in England.

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ISFM announces first veterinary nurse conference

News Story 1
 The International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM) - the veterinary division of International Cat Care - has announced its first annual conference dedicated to veterinary nurses. The day offers an opportunity to meet up with colleagues and enjoy more than five hours of stimulating CPD.

The conference is being held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Stratford-Upon-Avon, on Saturday 15 September 2018. Tickets are £95 per person and include lunch, coffee breaks, downloadable proceedings and CPD certificate. For details and to book your place visit  

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News Shorts
WSAVA awards Australian vet with 'Next Generation’ award

Australian vet Dr Guyan Weerasinghe has been crowned winner of the WSAVA ‘Next Generation’ Veterinary Award. The award recognises those who graduated within the last 10 years and have made a significant contribution to the welfare of companion animals and the veterinary profession as a whole.

Besides maintaining a small animal caseload, Dr Weerasinghe works for the Queensland Government’s Department of Agriculture where he is involved with animal disease surveillance and increasing the public health risks in veterinary practice. He also collaborates on various One Health projects across Australia and gives regular talks on the impact of climate change on animal health and welfare.

Dr Weerasinghe will receive his award at the WSAVA World Congress 2018 (25-28 September).