The Canary Pox Virus (CNPV) can infect many species of birds, and each species of bird may have its own unique strain of the pox virus. The Canary Pox virus can also enter human cells, but it cannot survive and multiply in human cells.
Most commonly, this virus is spread by mosquitoes and mites which transmit the virus from an infected bird to a non-infected bird. Canaries that are housed outdoors are more susceptible than those kept inside. The virus, however, can also be transmitted after eating infected scabs or inhalation of aerosols. Canaries that have survived Pox Virus can become carriers and spread the disease when introduced into a bird room or aviary.
Disease Progression / Symptoms
There are several distinct symptoms seen in canaries infected with the pox virus.
Dry or Skin Form (the most common form):
- Nodular or crusted areas of the non-feathered skin are seen. These lesions often occur around the face, eyes, beak and on the legs and feet. Beginning as white or yellow areas they rapidly progress to form crusts.
Wet or Throat Form:
- Thickened plaques occur in the mouth, throat, or sinuses.
Note: Wet and dry lesions may occur together.
- weight loss
- rapid breathing
- fluffed up feathers
- sudden onset of labored breathing
- sudden death
Currently, there is no cure for Canary Pox which is fatal about 80% of the time and there are currently no medications that combat a virus. However, a good number of birds do recover with good care. The following is recommended:
- Provide supportive care to your bird
- Treatment of the crusts using an antibacterial solution is used if a secondary infection is present.
- Antibiotics - although ineffective against the Canary Pox virus itself - may be prescribed to treat or prevent secondary bacterial infections.
- Bird-specific Probiotics hould be offered to help compete with potentially pathogenic bacteria.
- Prevention (please refer to below ...)
POXIMUNE ® C Canary Pox Vaccine, Modified Live Virus
Poximune C contains modified live canary pox virus. The vaccine is freeze-dried and is accompanied with the sterile diluent for rehydration and wing-web applicators.
Poximune C is recommended for the vaccination of canaries as an aid in the prevention of canary pox. Poximune C is administered by the wing web method to healthy, susceptible canaries at least four weeks old. The vaccine is rehydrated with the accompanying sterile diluent. Using the provided wing-web applicator, each canary receives the dose of 0.01 ml.
Other Relevant Web Resources
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Information contained on this website is provided as general reference only. For application to specific circumstances, professional advice should be sought.
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