Orf Virus (Sore Mouth Infection)

Orf virus is a member of the parapoxvirus genus in the Poxvirus family. This virus primarily causes an infection in sheep and goats, although it can be transmitted to people. Orf virus infection in animals is commonly referred to as sore mouth, scabby mouth, or contagious ecthyma. Animals infected with orf virus tyically develop scabby sores (lesions) around their lips, muzzle, and in their mouth. Humans that are infected typically develop ulcerative lesions or nodules on their hands. Infection with orf virus occurs throughout the world, wherever small ruminants exist.