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Deadly Disease Attacks Cattle

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Aug. 5 1904

Deadly Disease Attacks Cattle

Cows Near Lehigh are Victims of Strange Disease Which Kills

Five Herds Already Attacked

Farmers in Vicinity of Lehigh and Homer are Badly Frightened Over Appearance of Apparently Incombatible (sic) Disease Which Proves Fatal

The cattle in the vicinity of Lehigh and east about Homer have been attacked by a most peculiar disease that is baffling the veterinaries of the vicinity, and causing considerable loss to the farmers, who are much alarmed over the situation and fear a general spread of the disease. Five different farmers about Lehigh and Homer have lost cattle with the disease already.

The Malady Proves Fatal

The malady in nearly every instance had proven fatal and the people of the vicinity have no idea of the treatment of it. The first symptom, where milch cows are attacked is generally the caking of the bag. A little later the afflicted animal begins to stiffen in the hips and back, and staggers as she walks. Death almost always follows these symptoms closely.

Veterinaries Puzzled

Veterinaries have been called from Fort Dodge, but so far they have been able to give no satisfactory explanation of the disease. Whether it is some variety os smut or some new weed the animals are getting this season that acts on them are now known, but it is more probable they are the victims of some new disease.

Precautions Taken to Prevent Spreading

Every precaution is being taken by the farmers in whose herds the disease has appeared to prevent its spread. Among the several farmers who have lost cattle from the malady so far are F.L. Spencer, living three miles north of Lehigh and Ashberry Johnson, whose home is located near Homer in the eastern edge of Hamilton county. (Editor’s note: Homer was located within Webster County.)

County Has Been Free From Disease

The county has been unusually free form diseases of all kinds so far this season, as far as farm animals have been concerned until within the past month. Within the past four weeks, however, a number of maladies have made their appearance both among horses and cattle.