Animal Health & Disease Management

Diseases Killing very fast - Killer diseases (new)

Several diseases and incidents like Acidosis, Anthrax, BloatLightning strike, Snakebite and Poisoning can cause sudden death and are described below


It can be both a heart break and financial loss when a farmer suddenly looses one or more of his/her livestock without knowing the reason for the sudden death.

All the below described problems can cause death within a few hours – some of them may be preventable or even immediately treatable. The following gives a brief description of the prevention and treatment where possible as well as links to problems described elsewhere.



Also called dysentery is a very serious disease – especially for young animals. If you have the bacteria in your herd it can be the cause of death of all the young animals. See more under Enterotoxemia under Young animal’s problems



Poisoning can also cause sudden death. For more information please see under Plant and other poisoning


Liver fluke

in sheep is also a quick killer. For more information please see under Worms


Snake bite

Lastly also snake bite can be a cause of sudden death. If the snake is seen and identified, an antivenom can be tried.

If the cause is diagnosed in time people have also had luck with giving electric shocks : Ask a car owner to come quickly with the starter cables, leave the car running while giving a quick shock with the positive and negative ends placed on each side of the bite wound. This works on people as well!


Review process:


Nov 2010: Review team edited Anthrax file:

  1. Review workshop team. Nov 2 - 5, 2010
  2. October 2013: Infonet Reorganising files from previous versions


  • For Infonet: Anne, Dr Hugh Cran
  • For KARI: Dr Mario Younan KARI/KASAL, William Ayako - Animal scientist, KARI Naivasha
  • For DVS: Dr Josphat Muema - Dvo Isiolo, Dr Charity Nguyo - Kabete Extension Division, Mr Patrick Muthui - Senior Livestock Health Assistant Isiolo, Ms Emmah Njeri Njoroge - Senior Livestock Health Assistant Machakos
  • Pastoralists: Dr Ezra Saitoti Kotonto - Private practitioner, Abdi Gollo H.O.D. Segera Ranch
  • Farmers: Benson Chege Kuria and Francis Maina Gilgil and John Mutisya Machakos
  • Language and format: Carol Gachiengo  

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