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Nebraska pig virus: Diarrhea virus slaying pigs, cost of pork increase possible

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A Nebraska pig virus is slaying pigs throughout the state this week, and this fatal diarrhea inducing virus — called the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv) — is killing young piglets particularly due to fledgling immune systems. The sharp increase in deaths of these pork-producing animals might actually lead to higher costs of pork in the near future as well. The Inquisitr offers the sad details on this dangerous illness this Saturday, Dec. 14, 2013.

The Nebraska pig virus is causing serious trouble for our country’s sixth biggest state of overall pork production. According to the USDA, the Epidemic Diarrhea virus has recently spread to farms in the rural state, slaying young piglets and even older pigs at an alarming rate. In nearby states, already 2,000 deaths and counting in these animals have been attributed to PEDv, and the number continues to rise.

Although it’s not fully known how the deadly virus is spreading so fast, its fatal symptoms include extreme vomiting, diarrhea, and eventual dehydration that ultimately leads to death in afflicted pigs. Older pigs can usually live through the harrowing sickness, but over 50% of piglets are killed by the virus. It is believed that poor farming conditions and dirty, enclosed quarters have only let the fall of the swine population sweep on rabidly here in the U.S.

Officials are now working to deter the Nebraska pig virus by sanitizing livestock transportation vehicles, and also through farmers taking new precautions in keeping their farms clean.

Pork price increases are just one way in which this virus might indirectly detrimentally affect humans, and it's possible the price hikes could happen soon, say experts. Yet seeing these piglets and pigs dying in such numbers to the killer virus is sad enough, it seems.

“Before the Nebraska pig virus outbreak, PEDv had never been reported in North America until May. Nebraska has about 2,200 farming operations involving pork production so experts are concerned the hog supplies will decline steeply over the 2013 winter and causes pork prices to rise steeply in the spring and summer of 2014.”

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