Arcanobacterium phocae infection in mink (Neovison vison), seals (Phoca vitulina, Halichoerus grypus) and otters (Lutra lutra)

Bettina Nonnemann, Mariann Chriél, Gitte Larsen, Mette Sif Hansen, Elisabeth Holm, Karl Pedersen

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    Infectious skin disorders are not uncommon in mink. Such disorders are important as they have a negative impact on animal health and welfare as well as on the quality and value of the fur. This study presents the isolation of Arcanobacterium phocae from mink with severe skin lesions and other pathological conditions, and from wild seals and otters. In 2015, A. phocae was isolated for the first time in Denmark from outbreaks of dermatitis in mink farms. The outbreaks affected at least 12 farms. Originating from these 12 farms, 23 animals cultured positive for A. phocae. The main clinical findings were necrotizing pododermatitis or dermatitis located to other body sites, such as the lumbar and cervical regions. A. phocae could be isolated from skin lesions and in nine animals also from liver, spleen and lung, indicating a systemic spread. The bacterium was also, for the first time in Denmark, detected in dead seals (n = 9) (lungs, throat or wounds) and otters (n = 2) (throat and foot). An infectious skin disorder in mink associated with A. phocae has started to occur in Danish farmed mink. The origin of the infection has not been identified and it is still not clear what the pathogenesis or the port of entry for A. phocae infections are.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number74
    JournalActa Veterinaria Scandinavica
    Issue number1
    Number of pages6
    Publication statusPublished - 2017


    • Arcanobacterium phocae
    • Arcanobacterium phocisimile
    • Mink
    • Otter
    • Seal


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