How to prevent entry of diseases into the dairy farm?
- You need to buy the animals (both herd and individual animals) of known health status and control their introduction to the farm using quarantine if indicated. The best way to prevent the spread of diseases which are infected is to keep a closed herd. In the closed herd, no new animals will enter the herd and the animals which resided previously do not re-enter after they have left the herd. This is usually difficult to achieve in practice, but can be done through strict control of any animal introductions. There is an increased risk of disease when animals share grazing or other facilities.
- Prior to introducing the animals to the farm, all dairy herds and animals should be tested or screened for diseases that are common in their area of origin and also in the new locality.
- All the animals should have
- An identification system in order to enable trace back to their source, such as a birth to death identification system.
- Some form of Vendor Declaration or certification that details the health status or disease status of animals and any appropriate tests, treatments, vaccinations or other procedures that are being carried out
- It is mandatory for potential sellers of daily livestock to keep animal health records. The health status of the vendor herd should also be certified. This is important for few particular for diseases like paratuberculosis, which have long incubation periods where the animals’ health status will not be known and they should be kept under quarantine or should be placed separately from the existing animals for an appropriate period of time.
- New animals which are to be introduced to the farm should be inspected on arrival and you should make sure that they are free of external parasites such as ticks. If any sick animals are found, then they should be rejected. Treating all introduced animals for internal parasites on arrival is a very good practice.