Foot-and-mouth disease affects domesticated and wild, cloven-footed animals. It was first shown to be caused by a virus (foot-and-mouth disease virus, FMDV) in 1897.

In the 1920s scientists in France and Germany demonstrated that the virus had three different serotypes. In the 1940s and 1950s four more serotypes were discovered.Serotypes

Foot-and-mouth disease occurs in many parts of the world and especially in developing countries in Africa and Asia.
North America, European countries, Australia, New Zealand and many island states are recognised as being FMD-free.WOAH map of official FMD status

As foot-and-mouth disease is a globally distributed disease it is referred to in many different languages.
A collection of the different names for the disease in different languages has been made and is available on this site.FMD in different languages

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