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Peste des petits ruminants in Kenya; Pastoralist knowledge of the disease in goats in Samburu and Baringo Counties
Kihu S.M.*1,2, Njagi L.M.3, Njogu G.N.3,  Kamande J.N.1 and Gitao C.G.2
1Vetworks Eastern Africa, P.O. Box 10431-00200 Nairobi; 2Faculty of veterinary medicine, University of Nairobi, P.O. Box 29053-00625  Uthiru; 3Department of veterinary services, Veterinary Epidemiology Economic Unit, , Private bag 00625, Kangemi

Peste des Petits Ruminants disease outbreak was reported in Turkana County in Kenya in 2007. This was the first time PPR had clinically been reported in Kenya. Peste des Petits Ruminants disease was then assumed to have only infected Turkana County. Participatory disease surveillance was carried out in 2007 in Samburu and Baringo Counties which neighbour Turkana County to establish whether PPR was present in these counties and to describe the local pastoralist’s perceptions of PPR. The methods used were semi-structured interviews, participatory disease risk mapping, matrix scoring and proportional piling techniques in 13 focus group discussions each with an average of nine herders from 13 villages. Twenty four serum samples for antibody analysis with competitive ELISA were collected from goat herds of respondent villages. By the time of the study, no PPR vaccination had ever been carried in Samburu and Baringo counties. The results from this study indicated that the four pastoral ethnic communities interviewed in Samburu and Baringo counties had previous experience with PPR like disease. There was local knowledge of a PPR-like disease in each pastoral community and their descriptions of this syndrome closely matched textbook descriptions of PPR. Suspected cases of PPR were observed in the study areas. 10 out of 24 serum samples collected from suspected cases had PPR antibodies, and positive samples were found in each County. Based on the local characterizations of PPR, the presence of PPR antibodies in the serum samples and clinical observation of suspected PPR cases, the study concluded that PPR was occurring in Samburu and Baringo counties of Kenya, in areas that neighboured Turkana.  The morbidity and mortality in these other Counties may have been less dramatic and therefore not reached the attention of the veterinary department.

Keywords: Participatory disease surveillance; Peste des petit ruminants; Kenya
To cite this article: Kihu SM, Njagi LM, Njogu GN, Kamande JN and Gitao CG, 2012. Peste des petits ruminants in Kenya; Pastoralist knowledge of the disease in goats in Samburu and Baringo Counties. Res. Opin. Anim. Vet. Sci., 2(11), 544-553.

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