Evaluation of udder health and mastitis in llamas

Lynnel L. Rowan From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Lynnel L. Rowan in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM
,
Dawn E. Morin From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Dawn E. Morin in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, MS
,
Walter L. Hurley From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Walter L. Hurley in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 PhD
,
Roger D. Shanks From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Roger D. Shanks in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 PhD
,
Ibulaimu Kakoma From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Ibulaimu Kakoma in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, PhD
,
Walter E. Hoffmann From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Walter E. Hoffmann in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, PhD
,
Thomas E. Goetz From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by Thomas E. Goetz in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, MS
, and
James S. Cullor From the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Medicine (Rowan, Morin, Kakoma, Goetz), Veterinary Pathobiology (Hoffmann), and Animal Sciences (Hurley, Shanks), College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, 1008 W Hazelwood Dr, Urbana, IL 61801; and the Department of Clinical Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (Cullor).

Search for other papers by James S. Cullor in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, PhD

Click on author name to view affiliation information

Objective

To investigate intramammary infections in llamas, identify the pathogens responsible, and determine whether effects of intramammary infection could be detected by use of mastitis indicator tests commonly used for cows.

Design

Observational study.

Animals

100 llamas on 10 farms.

Procedure

Milk samples were evaluated by bacterial culturing and by determination of somatic cell count (SCC), using direct microscopic and automated counting methods, California Mastitis Test score, pH, and N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activity. Correlation coefficients were determined among the various mastitis indicator tests, and test results were determined for milk from infected and uninfected glands.

Results

Evidence of intramammary infection was evident in 76 of 369 (21%) milk samples, with 54 of 94 (57%) llamas having at least 1 infected gland. Staphylococcus sp other than Staphylococcus aureus were the predominant pathogens. None of the llamas had clinical signs of mastitis, and significant differences were not detected in SCC, California Mastitis Test score, pH, or N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activity between infected and uninfected samples. California Mastitis Test scores were negative or trace for 307 of 313 (98%) samples, and SCC were low. In contrast, pH and N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activity of milk from uninfected glands were higher than values reported for milk from uninfected cows, and neither variable was significantly correlated with the number of somatic cells in samples of llama milk.

Clinical Implications

Although intramammary infections develop in llamas, inflammation (mastitis) appears to be rare. Values for mastitis indicator tests used for cows cannot be directly extrapolated to llamas. Subclinical mastitis is apparently not an important problem in llamas in the United States. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;209:1457–1463).

Objective

To investigate intramammary infections in llamas, identify the pathogens responsible, and determine whether effects of intramammary infection could be detected by use of mastitis indicator tests commonly used for cows.

Design

Observational study.

Animals

100 llamas on 10 farms.

Procedure

Milk samples were evaluated by bacterial culturing and by determination of somatic cell count (SCC), using direct microscopic and automated counting methods, California Mastitis Test score, pH, and N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activity. Correlation coefficients were determined among the various mastitis indicator tests, and test results were determined for milk from infected and uninfected glands.

Results

Evidence of intramammary infection was evident in 76 of 369 (21%) milk samples, with 54 of 94 (57%) llamas having at least 1 infected gland. Staphylococcus sp other than Staphylococcus aureus were the predominant pathogens. None of the llamas had clinical signs of mastitis, and significant differences were not detected in SCC, California Mastitis Test score, pH, or N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activity between infected and uninfected samples. California Mastitis Test scores were negative or trace for 307 of 313 (98%) samples, and SCC were low. In contrast, pH and N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase activity of milk from uninfected glands were higher than values reported for milk from uninfected cows, and neither variable was significantly correlated with the number of somatic cells in samples of llama milk.

Clinical Implications

Although intramammary infections develop in llamas, inflammation (mastitis) appears to be rare. Values for mastitis indicator tests used for cows cannot be directly extrapolated to llamas. Subclinical mastitis is apparently not an important problem in llamas in the United States. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;209:1457–1463).

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 296 296 59
PDF Downloads 38 38 2
Advertisement