Objective: To determine prevalence of papillomatous digital dermatitis (PDD) among culled adult dairy and beef cattle in the southeastern United States.
Animals: 815 cattle examined during 4 visits to a slaughterhouse.
Procedure: The left hind foot of each animal was examined for gross lesions of PDD. Breed and sex of the animals were recorded. Lesions were examined histologically for pathologic changes and bacteria, especially spirochetes.
Results: 22 of 76 (29%) dairy cattle and 29 of 739 (4%) beef cattle had gross lesions of PDD. Detection of lesions was not associated with sex of dairy cattle, but male beef cattle were more likely to have lesions of PDD than were female beef cattle. Histologically, acute and chronic lesions were seen; the most severe changes were localized to the stratum corneum. Spirochetes were seen in lesions from 31 of 51 (61%) cattle.
Conclusions and clinical relevance: Results suggest that PDD is common among culled adult cattle. Prevalence was higher in culled adult dairy cattle than in culled adult beef cattle.