Capripoxviruses are among the most serious of all animal poxviruses. Sheep, goat, and cattle serve as natural hosts. These viruses cause negative economic consequences by damaging hides and wool and forcing the establishment of trade restrictions in response to an outbreak. The genus consists of three species: the type species: sheeppox virus (SPPV), goatpox virus (GTPV), and lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV). They share no serological relationship with camel pox, horse pox, or avian poxes. Capripoxviruses for sheeppox and goatpox infect only sheep and goat respectively.
Lumpy skin disease virus affects primarily cattle, but studies have been shown that giraffes and impala are also susceptible to LSDV. Humans cannot be infected by Capripoxviruses.