Canine distemper is an acute or subacute, highly contagious, febrile disease that is caused by canine distemper virus (CDV). Two CDV-infected wild Taiwan ferret-badgers (Melogale moschata subauantiaca) were found in Kaohsiung County, southern Taiwan, in 2005. Each case was confirmed by detecting CDV RNA in lung and brain tissues. A suspected third case was detected based on clinical signs and histology. These cases are the first record of wildlife infected by CDV in Taiwan. It is believed that domestic dogs or coexisting wild carnivores infected with the virus were the most likely source, and a serologic survey is needed to fully understand the host range of this virus in Taiwan. In addition, further genetic sequencing is needed to determine the source of these CDV cases.
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Vol. 44 • No. 2