Bovine Ischaemic Teat Necrosis (ITN) is an emerging disease that affects dairy cows. There have been reports of increasing number of cases over the last 5 years throughout the United Kingdom with potential cases in Europe and as far ranging as Australia.
ITN is a skin disease that causes a lesion (sore) at the base of cow’s teat at the site where the teat meets the udder. These lesions may extend down one side of the teat or partially up on to the skin of the udder. The cow finds these lesions very irritable and may constantly lick her teats. In the more severe cases she will remove her affected teats which will often lead to her being culled.
At the moment very little is known about the disease. Currently it is not known where the disease is, how many animals are affected or what causes this severe disease. Due to the recent increase in reported cases it is likely that the cause is infectious.
There are currently no known successful treatments and a large number of animals that have the disease are culled. Taken together this severe disease is causing animal welfare issues, as well as economic and food security problems.