Original Research

Prevalence and risk factors for brucellosis seropositivity in cattle in Nyagatare District, Eastern Province, Rwanda

Gervais Ndazigaruye, Borden Mushonga, Erick Kandiwa, Alaster Samkange, Basiamisi E. Segwagwe
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 89 | a1625 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jsava.v89i0.1625 | © 2018 Gervais Ndazigaruye, Borden Mushonga, Erick Kandiwa, Alaster Samkange, Basiamisi E. Segwagwe | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 18 October 2017 | Published: 05 December 2018

About the author(s)

Gervais Ndazigaruye, School of Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, University of Rwanda, Rwanda
Borden Mushonga, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Namibia, Namibia
Erick Kandiwa, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Namibia, Namibia
Alaster Samkange, Department of Clinical Studies, University of Namibia, Namibia
Basiamisi E. Segwagwe, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Botswana, Botswana


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Abstract

A survey involving 120 small-scale dairy farmers was carried out to assess risk factors associated with brucellosis in cattle from selected sectors of Nyagatare District, Rwanda. A sample of cattle from nine selected sectors of Nyagatare was tested for brucellosis using the Rose Bengal Test. Of the respondents, 57.5% were unaware of brucellosis as a disease, 85.8% did not screen new additions to the herd for brucellosis and 82.5% did not remove brucellosis seropositive animals from the herd. The prevalence of brucellosis in herds with cows with no history of abortion was 38.5% and 17.0% in those with a history of abortion. None of the respondents disinfected abortion sites or vaccinated against brucellosis. The prevalence of brucellosis in cows with a history of retained placenta was 36% and 2% in those with no history of retained placenta. Of the respondents, 62.5% reportedly fed foetal membranes to dogs. About 65.8% of the respondents with brucellosis-positive animals reported a calving interval longer than 1 year. Katabagemu (28.6%) had the highest prevalence of brucellosis seropositivity while Karama had none. Brucellosis in cows (21.4%) was significantly higher than that in heifers (12.8%) (p < 0.05), but there was no significant difference between heifers and bulls or between bulls and cows (p > 0.05). The occurrence of brucellosis in herds with 40–70 cattle (26.9%) was significantly greater than the 14.9% of herds with 10–39 cattle (p < 0.05). Seropositivity to brucellosis in cross-breed cattle (23.6%) was significantly greater than that in indigenous cattle (13.8%) (p < 0.05). There was no significant difference in the overall prevalence of brucellosis in cattle from different grazing systems (p > 0.05). Seropositivity to brucellosis was significantly different (p < 0.05) between the fourth parity (32.5%) and first parity (14.3%) cows. The findings in this study confirmed the existence of brucellosis as a problem in Nyagatare and the authors recommend that farmer education on the epidemiology, risk factors and mitigation of the disease be undertaken as a matter of urgency.

Keywords

brucellosis; prevalence; risk factors; Rwanda

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