Foot and mouth disease is one of the most dangerous disease every animal farmers should be scared of. Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is a highly contagious viral disease. the morbidity rate is very high in naïve populations, and also significant pain and distress occur in some species. Sequelae may include decreased milk yield, permanent hoof damage and also chronic mastitis. High mortality rates can sometimes occur in young animals or in some wildlife populations. Foot and mouth disease was once found worldwide; however, it has been eradicated from some regions including all of North America and western Europe.
Early clinical signs
1. in a dairy herd several cows may suddenly show depressed milk yield, go off their feed, run a fever, have a dramatic drop in milk yield,
2. the animals begins salivating profusely, the saliva running from their mouths (slavering). Tongue and mouth lesions are very painful and cause animals to drool and stop eating
3. vesicles are noticed on the lips, on the teats and around the coronets, the areas above hooves. These vesicles often combine to form large, swollen blisters that erupt to leave raw, painful ulcers that take up to 10 days to heal.
4. rams can be reluctant to mate. Significant numbers of ewes abort in some outbreaks.
5. Young lambs and kids may die due to heart failure (vesicles may be absent) or from emaciation.
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There is no specific treatment for Foot and mouth disease , other than supportive care. Treatment is likely to be allowed only in countries or regions where Foot and mouth disease is endemic. Although Foot and mouth disease is not very deadly in adult animals, it can kill young animals and also cause serious production losses. Foot and mouth disease is a viral disease that spreads rapidly between animals. Virus is excreted in breath, saliva, mucus, milk and faeces.
The virus can be excreted by animals for up to four days before clinical signs appear. Animals can become infected through inhalation, ingestion and direct contact. The disease spreads most commonly through the movement of infected animals. In sheep the symptoms can be absent or very mild, and since undetected infected sheep can be an important source of infection. Foot and mouth disease virus can also be spread on wool, hair, grass or straw; by the wind; or by mud or manure sticking to footwear, clothing, livestock equipment or vehicle tyres.
How To Prevent Foot And Mouth Disease
- Standardize your farm animal movements and keep to an absolute minimum.
- People and Vehicles are a potential source of potential contamination.
- Only allow essential visitors on to the farm and provide your own boots and clothing at the entrance.
- If visitors do not shower ensure hands are washed.
- Limit the movement of people between buildings as much as possible.
- Place foot dips at all entrances, service and feed delivery points also Use an approved disinfectant at the correct dilution.
- Review all cleaning and disinfection procedures. Only allow cleaned and disinfected vehicles to visit your farm.
- Adopt special precautions at loading ramps. Provide designated boots and overalls for use on the loading ramp only. Disinfect all loading areas before and after use. Check drainage is away from the farm.
- Clean all pens thoroughly because These should be disinfected and dried between pig groups.
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Using the following protocol for cleaning your farm animal facilities:
- Soften dirt and manure in heavily soiled areas using a low-pressure water spray. Leave to soak for a few hours.
- Once softened, use high-pressure sprays (750 psi to 2,000 psi preferred) to remove all the dirt and organic material.
- Start at the back of the pen or building and work toward the front.
- Spray the ceiling first, then the walls and finally the floor.
- Use sprayers and nozzles that allow you to wash hard-to-reach areas, including the undersides of troughs, feeders and flooring when possible.
- Once the pen is clean, rinse all surfaces to remove accumulated aerosol organic material.
- Spray on surfactant or emulsifying agent to remove any residual organic materials.
- Rinse all surfaces.
- Thoroughly Disinfect (NOTE: Disinfectants only work on clean surfaces).
- Disinfectants work best at temperatures above 65° F, but not above 110° F.
- Follow the manufacturer’s application instructions for the product.
- Apply the disinfectant with pressure (ideally through pressure washer) to forcedisinfectant into pores, cracks and crevices. Fog or aerosol application is a second alternative.
- Move from back to front and from top to bottom of the room.
- Allow the building time to dry.
- Leave rooms vacant for as long as the production system will allow before repopulating.READ MORE: Magical Benefits Of Earthworms On Your Farm