From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 4, Number 36 - December 2, 2004
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Federal vet takes job

by Cat Urbigkit

On Jan. 9, 2005, a new federal veterinarian is expected to report for duty in Sublette County.

Owen Henderson of Lincoln, Neb., will come on board with USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service as a veterinary medical officer, according to APHISís Bret Combs. Henderson will be a primary contact person for handling brucellosis and other animal health issues in western Wyoming.

Combs said Henderson has been in private practice in Lincoln for some 20 years, with most of his work involving large animals. The last few years has involved a lot of equine work as well, Combs said, also citing Hendersonís work with local emergency management in terms of animal health and bio-terrorism as an asset.

The placement of a federal vet in Sublette County comes just over a year after a Boulder-area cattle herd was found to be infected with brucellosis. The herd was subsequently destroyed.

This week, federal animal health officials were headed to Jackson to de-populate the entire herd belonging to Jackson Hole Herefords. The cattle, both commercial and purebreds, will all be sent to slaughter in Nebraska and the herd owner will receive a federal indemnity payment for the herd, which was recently confirmed to harbor the dreaded disease.

Animal health officials reportedly arenít aware of any other brucellosis cases in Wyoming, so focus is now on prevention of further outbreaks. To that end, Wyoming Game and Fish Department and animal health officials were due to meet with livestock producers in Pinedale this week to discuss herd management plans and ways to prevent transfer of disease from elk to cattle.

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