TB found in Oliver County dairy heifer

BISMARCK – State and federal veterinarians are investigating a case of tuberculosis in a young, non-lactating heifer from an Oliver County dairy herd.

Dr. Susan Keller, the state veterinarian, said the case was found when the owner agreed to have the herd tested after an employee tested positive for Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex.  

“U.S. Veterinary Service Laboratory in Ames, IA, confirmed the TB diagnosis in the heifer.” Keller said. “The heifer had never produced milk, and in any case, routine pasteurization would prevent any contamination of the milk supply.”

Tuberculosis is a zoonotic disease and can be transmitted from animals to humans and from humans to animals.

“An epidemiologic investigation is now underway, and further testing will be done to determine the source of the disease and to prevent its spread,” Keller said. “Both the herd owner and the employee are fully cooperating in the investigation.”

Keller said the state veterinarians are working with USDA-APHIS Veterinary Services and the North Dakota Department of Health in the investigation and testing.