RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - South Dakota's state veterinarian says many of the thousands of cattle that perished in an Oct. 4 blizzard died of congestive heart failure brought on by stress.
Dustin Oedekoven also has released updated totals on livestock deaths from the storm. He says his office has verified the deaths of 13,977 cattle, 1,257 sheep, 287 horses and 40 bison.
That's about 15,500 animals. Oedekoven says many of them died after being pummeled by rain, snow and unrelenting winds.
Oedekoven thinks there are still producers who have not reported their losses from the storm that dumped up to 4 feet of snow in western South Dakota.
The South Dakota Stockgrowers says a fund to help ranchers restock their herds has received more than $700,000 in donations.