Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis (CAE) in Goats or

Ovine Progressive Pneumonia (OPP) in Sheep

CAE and OPP are persistent small ruminant lentivirus infections of goats and sheep, respectively.

Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis (CAE) is a viral disease in goats that is caused by the Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis Virus (CAEV). It infects the goat for life, although most goats do not show clinical signs of the disease through their lifetime. However, it can lead to chronic disease in the joints and on rare occasions, encephalitis in goat kids less than 6 months of age. The clinical signs of CAE infection vary and are dependent on the type of disease that presents. Arthritis, pneumonia, mastitis, weight loss, and encephalitis (acute inflammation of the brain; lameness, lack of muscle control, head tilt, circling, and blindness) are some of the clinical signs that will present. For more detailed information click on › Caprine Arthritis and Encephalitis

Ovine Progressive Pneumonia (OPP) is a slowly progressing viral disease in sheep caused by the ovine lentivirus. Most sheep infected with ovine lentivirus do not show clinical signs of OPP, however the sheep that do present clinical signs are usually over the age of two. Sheep infected with the virus can exhibit a wide range of clinical symptoms. Some of the symptoms include thin ewe syndrome (progressive weight loss that occurs despite having normal appetite), increased breathing effort at rest, secondary bacterial infection, hard bag (enlarged firm udder with reduced or no milk flow which is usually irreversible), arthritis, and meningitis/encephalitis (unsteady gait, twitching, or stumbling, which can progress to hind limb or total paralysis; least common form of the disease). For more detailed information click on

Caseous Lymphadenitis (CL) is a contagious disease caused by Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis bacterium that occurs in sheep and goats. The disease is characterized by abscess formation near lymph nodes (external form) or abscesses form within internal organs and lymph nodes (internal form). The external form is more common in goats while the internal form is more common in sheep. The primary ways that CL spreads is through pus from abscess or inanimate objects contaminated with abscess material. Although much less common, the internal forms of CL can spread through the blood, lymph, or respiratory secretions (nasal discharge and coughing). The most common form of external CL presents as abscesses in the peripheral lymph node region, and the most common form of internal CL presents as chronic weight loss and failure to thrive. Click on for more information on CL.

Johne’s Disease (Paratuberculosis) is a chronic contagious disease of the GI tract caused by Mycobacterium paratuberculosis that is capable of infecting and causing disease in all ruminants including sheep and goats. The infection usually spreads from feces to mouth, and the infection is usually acquired via ingestion (contaminated teats, colostrum, feed, or water). Animals are infected early in life but symptoms don’t appear until after the age of 2. Johnes Disease in sheep and goats is characterized by progressive weight loss. Click on for more information on Johnes Disease.

BioPRYN Pregnancy Test is a pregnancy detection tool for use in ruminant animals. It measures the presence of Pregnancy-Specific Protein B (PSPB) in the blood circulation of the animal. The PSPB protein is only produced by the placenta of the growing fetus. Does or ewes must by 30 days post-breeding to use the test.



Goat and Sheep Blood Testing Options

Understanding and testing for certain diseases and pregnancy in goats and sheep is important! At Ag Health Laboratories, we are committed to providing analytical data to meet these needs. Therefore, we offer different blood analyses for our goat and sheep customers.

Many veterinarians recommend a basic biosecurity screen for goats or sheep. The biosecurity screen can be used to identify what diseases a herd currently has, as a screening tool for new animals entering a herd, and for animals producing milk for human consumption.