Hemorrhagic Disease (HD) is one of the most common diseases affecting white-tailed deer in the eastern United States. The viruses causing this disease are transmitted by biting flies or midges.
White-tailed deer usually develop signs about seven days after infection; however, some animals may show no signs at all. These symptoms may include:
- Swollen face or neck
- Loss of appetite
- Acting tired or weak
- Limping (lameness)
- Difficulty breathing
- Sudden death
Deer with HD often have mouth sores and may bleed from the nose and/or mouth. Some animals may develop swollen, blue tongues as well. Often these animals have hoof overgrowth and may have dents or cracks in the walls of their hooves. Usually, infected deer will go into shock and die within 8 to 36 hours.