Uruguay has ordered the vaccination of 90.000 livestock cattle in the border area with Brazil following an outbreak of bat-transmitted paralytic rabies that killed thirty head of cattle. Sanitary authorities have asked farmers and residents to help locate bat caves on both sides of the open frontier.
Although the bat species that is transmitting the paralytic rabies has yet not been clearly identified because no records of this kind of outbreak exist in Uruguay, with the help of Brazilian authorities the vaccine covers several rabies virus strains that are known to be common in Brazil. Uruguay's head of Livestock Sanitary Services in the area, Jose Pedro Vargas, said that vaccination will cover a radius of thirty kilometers from where the dead cattle were found and will include cattle, sheep, goats and horses. However he warned that the vaccine immunity is only extensive to healthy livestock and not those that could be incubating the virus. The two doses vaccination process has to be done in a thirty days period. Vargas called on farmers and residents to help locate bat caves so sanitary staff can proceed to net specimens.