Infectious Caprine Keratoconjuctivitis in a Beetal buck: A Case Report  

M.N. Mughal , A. Anwar , G. Abbas , W. Azeem
Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan
Author    Correspondence author
International Journal of Molecular Veterinary Research, 2015, Vol. 5, No. 1   doi: 10.5376/ijmvr.2015.05.0001
Received: 04 Nov., 2014    Accepted: 28 Jan., 2015    Published: 17 Feb., 2015
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Mughal et al., 2015, Infectious Caprine Keratoconjuctivitis in a Beetal buck: A Case Report, International Journal of Molecular Veterinary Research, Vol.5, No.1 1-7 (doi: 10.5376/ijmvr.2015.05.0001)


In the present communication a case of infectious caprine keratoconjuctivitis in a Beetal buck is presented. The back was brought at Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, University of Agriculture Faisalabad Pakistan with the complaint of anorexia, lacrimation and partial blindness. The unremarkable findings of the complete clinical examination were elevated rectal temperature, a decreased skin tenting time, mucopurulent occular discharge, corneal opacity, corneal ulceration and partial blindness. The increased level leukocytic count was only the signicant findings of complete blood cell count. Sample of corneal scraping was collected from the both eyes results of which yielded Mycoplasma caprae. The diagnosis of the infectious caprine keratoconjuctivitis was arrived on the basis of clinical signs, positive acridine results and laboratory investigation. The treatment consisting of oxtetracycine, flunixin meglumine and fluid therapy was instituted. The patient recovered completely after 7 days of treatment.

Infectious caprine keratoconjuctivitis; Acridine dye; Beetal buck; Oxytetracycline

Infectious caprine keratoconjuctivitis (ICK) is an excruciating, highly contagious and mutifactorial bacterial disease of sheep and goat having enormous difference in epidemiological and clinicopathological picture (Shahzad et al., 2013). It has been well documented that the pathogenesis of ICK is influenced by the several factors including immune status of the predisposed animal, signalment, virulence of the pathogenic strain involved, environmental factors and secondary infections (Hars and Gauthier 1984; Nicolet 1985). Inflammation of cornea, conjunctiva and finally ulceration are the conspicuous features of this disease. It may cause temporary or permanent blindness in infected animals (Jesse et al., 2013). In small ruminants, the etiological agent of this disease is Mycoplasma and Chlamydophila spp, nonetheless, Staphylococcus aureus, Moraxella caprae, Moraxella bovis and Listeria monocytogenes are also incriminated (Kodjo et al., 1995; Laven and Lawrence, 2006). In cattle, the most important causative agent of infectious bovine keratoconjuctivitis is Moraxella bovis (Frisch, 1975). The reported clinical signs associated with ICK are mucopurulent ocular discharge, blepharospasm, swollen eyes, corneal opacity, photophobia and (Browning, 2007). Infrequently, persistent infection of the anterior chamber may leads towards the development of panophthalmitis and consequently shrinking of the ocular globe. Scrutiny of the published data has indicated that no study has been conducted in Pakistan on ICK in Beetal goats. However, one study of ICK in lohi sheep can be traced back in literature (Shahzad et al., 2013). In the present communication, a case report of ICK in a Beetal buck along with treatment regime is put on the record.

Case presentation
A 2 year old Beetal buck weighing about 15 kg was referred to Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital (VMTH), University of Agriculture Faisalabad Pakistan, for the treatment of anorexia, lacrimation and partial blindness from last five days . At VMTH, the patient underwent routine physical, clinical, hemato-biochemical and microbiological examination. The clinical examination revealed elevated rectal temperature (40.4oC; normal: 38.5–39.7oC), capillary refill time (>5 seconds; normal: 2-3 second) and skin tenting time (>3 seconds; normal: 1-2), nevertheless, respiration (23 breaths/ min; normal: 14-34 breaths/min) and heart rate (65 beats/ min; normal: 60-80 beats/min) were within normal reference range.

A thorough examination of both eyes revealed mucopurulent discharge, hyperemia and corneal opacity (Plate 1) along with diminishing pupillary reflex and menace response. The administration of acridine dye (Acridine Yellow G, Sigma Aldrich®) in both the eyes showed corneal ulceration (Plate 2). Increased leukocytic count was the only significant hemato-biochemical finding. Corneal scrapings were collected from both eyes using aseptic techniques for microbiological examination results of which were suggestive of M. caprae. Briefly, after collection the sample was shifted to lab in a transfer medium and processed within 24 hours of collection. The samples were inoculated over standard Mycoplasma broth medium enriched with 20% horse serum, 2.5 % yeast extract and 1% glucose. The resulting culture was propagated at 37°C in a humidified atmosphere having 5% carbon dioxide. Diagnosis of ICK was deduced on the basis of pathognomonic clinical signs, hemato-biochemical findings and isolation of Mycoplasma caprae. A combination of flunixine meglumine (Loxin®; Selmore; 2.2mg/kg BID, IM) and oxytetracycline (Oxy LA®; Selmore 15mg/kg, SID, IM and Sub. conjuctival) was instituted. Additionally, keeping in view the hydration status of the patient, fluid therapy using Ringer lactate-D (Ringer-D®; 40ml/kg) was instituted. The buck was admitted at VMTH and received the treatment on daily basis for a period of 5 days and recovered completely after 1 week. The guardian was advised to provide fly free environment and seek the assistance of nearby veterinarian to continue the treatment for next three days if relapse occurs.


Plate 1 Marked corneal opacity in left eye


Plate 2 Corneal ulceration of the eye observed after the administration of acridine dye

Agriculture is an exceedingly vital sector of Pakistan’s economy. The share of agriculture in the economy of Pakistan is of prime importance as it contributes more than 21 per cent to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Livestock farming contributes 53.2% in agriculture and GDP of Pakistan (Census, 2010). The estimated population of the goat in Pakistan is approximately 49.14 million and most of the people are directly or indirectly associated with goat farming (Census, 2010). In the present era, there has been escalating demand to determine the prevalence and significance of diseases with multifactorial etiologies. ICK is serious threat to the small ruminants farming throughout the world. Among caprines ICK usually manifests in four stages. First stage is characterized by lacrimation, blepharospasm and photophobia. Second stage begins with the formation of a slight cloudy area in the center of eye and radiates outward covering the cornea completely. Eye appears pink due to extensive blood vessels growing across cornea. In stage III, the cornea gets ulcerated and appears grey-white to yellow color. Finally, in stage IV, the corneal ulcers either heal with formation of scar or get chronic. The eye may get cloudy but is cleared with passage of time. Sometimes, the prolapse of iris due to corneal ulcer may lead to loss of vision (Abdullah et al., 2014). The clinical signs observed in the buck of present case report are consistent with the study documenting an elevated rectal temperature, partial or complete blindness and increased leukocytic count in the patient affected with ICK (Jesse et al., 2013). This disease manifests throughout the seasons of year, however in the light of some published data, it is more commonly seen in winter due to housing and close contact while feeding and mating (Aitken Obe, 2007; Scott, 2010). The disease is usually self limiting, nonetheless, the use of systemic and topical antibiotics may hasten the recovery.The recommended therapeutic plan for ICK is oxytetracycline (15mg/kg IM), however, polymyxin B and erythromycin are also reported to be effective (Gasparotto, 2009). Additionally, NSAIDS and fluid therapy are warranted in some complicated cases of ICK. Efficient hygienic management along with vaccination is the mainstay of prevention. Those hygienic conditions include fly control using dust bags and insecticide impregnated ear tags and isolation of newly introduced animal in herd. Moreover, the provision of shade to protect animal from UV radiations should also be done. Keeping in view the existence of ICK in Pakistan, reports of novel cases of this microbe should be continually encouraged to attain further information concerning prevalence, endemic areas, and epidemic nationwide.
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Shahzad W., Munir R., Rana M.Y., Ahmad R., Khan M.S., Akbar G., Ijaz M., Mehmood F., 2013, Prevalence, molecular diagnosis and treatment of Mycoplasma conjunctivae isolated from infectious keratoconjunctivitis affected Lohi sheep maintained at Livestock Experiment Station, Bahadurnagar, Okara, Pakistan. Tropical Animal Health and Production, 45(3):737-742

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