The Farewell Toast

“The time has come the walrus said, to speak of many things…” But in this case I need to amend that line. I’m here to speak of only one thing – change.

The AZ St Vet’s blog is moving to a new home. If you are subscribed, that connection should remain so that any new posts will generate a notification to your email. Subscriptions to RoamingTheRange.Com will be disabled. If you wish you may (re-) subscribe there – as soon as I have it up and running.

This change is because today I take my leave from being AZ St Vet. It’s been an interesting sojourn. I am infinitely wealthier for the relationships that have been given the opportunity to flourish.

Thank you for your time and attention and in many cases, your help.

I will leave you with the very fitting words of a fellow Tar Heel. (The title is a link which will take you to a YouTube of his studio recording.)

The Farewell Toast

 – Mike Cross

Here’s to the wine we love to drink
And the food we love to eat.

Here’s to our wives and sweethearts,
And may they never meet.

Here’s champagne for our real friends
And real pain for our sham friends.

And when this journey finally ends,
May all of us find peace.

Here’s to the women that I’ve loved
And all the ones I’ve kissed.

As for regrets, I’ve just have one
That’s all the ones I’ve missed.

Ah, women’s faults are many. We men have only two:
Every single thing we say and everything we do.

I wish you health; I wish you wealth
And happiness galore.

I wish you Heaven when you die,
What could I wish you more?

May your joys be as deep as the ocean;
Your troubles as light as its foam.

And may you find sweet peace of mind,
Wherever you may roam.

Good Night.

VSV Keeps Moving

An updated VSV Situation Report is available at USDA APHIS VS page:

  • Since the start of the outbreak, two hundred seventy-nine (279) VSV-affected premises (New Jersey serotype) have been identified and quarantined in 7 states (Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming).
  • As of last week, there are 140 affected premises remaining under quarantine in 5 states (Colorado, New Mexico, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming).

Fortunately here in AZ we are still without VSV cases.

What I do hear about frequently in the these days from my equine practitioner colleagues is the never-ending colics and laminitis war stories. It’s a harsh environment out there this time of year. Please stay alert and attentive.

2015 Livestock Camp in Holbrook Arizona


Livestock camp is a time for educating youth in proper techniques of choosing the right animal, feeding, grooming, showing and overall how to produce a quality product.

I was impressed with the turn out for the 2015 livestock camp. Approximately 60 young people attended with the majority from our state but also some were visiting from California.

Arizona Department of Agriculture was invited to take part in providing some of this education. We really appreciated having this opportunity to build relations and advise this audience on how they can help decrease chances of becoming contaminated with disease and what roles they can play in eradicating disease. We also discussed animal traceability, along with how diseases are spread and ultimately what happens to the end product (food!) if the system fails.

If you are interested in learning more about Livestock camps around the state, please contact Steve Lackey (


Backyard Bird Biosecurity

We received information today about a webinar tomorrow that may be of interest to folks with backyard birds.

“Practice Backyard Biosecurity: Learn from the Experts” will begin at 4pm local time. Follow the link to register.

Some points slated to be covered:

  • How to recognize and protect your birds from devastating diseases like highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI)
  • How to protect your family from illness caused by your birds
  • Ways to keep predators and disease-carrying wild birds away from your flock
  • Where to find resources to help keep your flock safe and healthy

VSV Update 5-Aug-2015

Arizona currently has no VSV activity!

The last suspect case was confirmed NEGATIVE on July 27 and the Administrative Order imposing a quarantine on the livestock on the premises subsequently rescinded.

In the last few weeks we, with the help of several veterinary practitioners, have investigated several lesioned-animals. None have met definition for VSV-related quarantine.

I’m very happy to announce that currently we have nothing under VSV-quarantine and currently no cases under investigation!

Unfortunately other states do continue to deal with VSV. SD is the most recent to have confirmed its presence.

National VSV Data can be found on USDA APHIS’ website.

VSV Continues to Spread in the West

The State Veterinarian of WY announced last evening their first case of Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV). The affected horse was at Cheyenne Frontier Days (CFD) for five days as a contract act horse before lesions were found.

This horse was not stalled with or near any contestant horses. The horse was quarantined and sent back to its Wyoming origin to be held in isolation away from all other livestock. No other symptomatic or clinical animals have been identified or reported.

This week’s National VSV Situation Report has details.

Southern AZ Rabies Update

Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors lifted the rabies quarantine back in this spring. Below is a link to a review (in map form) of positive cases over the last couple of years.

If you’re riding, hiking, or simply out wandering around, please be aware. Same goes for your livestock or pets in the area. Be aware of the risks and consider vaccination. Rabies isn’t one of those recommended learning experiences.

2015-07-20 Skunk Map Southern AZ 2013-15

VSV – Almost Over in AZ?

I wish I could say we were done with VSV in AZ. But that’s not something I can say. This week we issued another Administrative Order quarantining another facility due to suspicious lesions. We are awaiting results from the lab. But as you probably are guessing, those results won’t be available until sometime next week.

Please continue to be vigilant. And patient.

It seems the current hot zone for VSV has moved into CO. Currently counties now with infected premises include: Delta, Larimer (new), Las Animas (new), Montezuma, and Montrose.

Maps and current national reports of the VSV situation