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It wasn’t what she ate

washington / reuters /Investigators are searching for a dozen herdmates of the elderly California dairy cow that had mad cow disease, the Agriculture Department said May 17, with all signs indicating it was a rare spontaneous case of the fatal brain-wasting illness.

Two laboratories associated with the World Organization for Animal Health confirmed the cow had an atypical version of mad cow disease, USDA said. It was the same diagnosis as USDA tests.

A review of feed records at the Tulare County dairy found no anomalies and audits of feed suppliers show they complied with safeguards to prevent feed contamination.

Although USDA said the latest case was “atypical,” meaning it arose spontaneously, it is USDA practice to search for other offspring or herdmates.

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