Biosecurity means doing everything you can to reduce the chances of an infectious disease being carried onto your farm by people, animals, equipment, or vehicles. It also means doing everything you can to reduce the chance of disease leaving your farm.
On the farm, one of the greatest risks comes from bringing new animals onto your premises, commingling or exposing your animals to other animals. It is a common way to introduce new disease-causing organisms. As a rule of thumb, new animals and those who have been commingled or exposed to other animals should be segregated for 30 days.
Farm visitors can pose a risk, particularly if they have been on other farms with animals or have recently been in other countries with diseases exotic to the United States.
Farm equipment that has been in contact with livestock or manure can be a source of infection. Equipment should not be shared with other farms unless it has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before it reaches your property.
Common Sense Biosecurity Measures You Can Follow
The following do’s and don’ts provide some basic tips for you to help prevent foreign animal disease outbreaks.
- Keep Your Distance
Restrict access to your property and your livestock or poultry, and post a sign. Have one area where visitors can enter. Do not allow visitors near livestock or poultry unless absolutely necessary, and then make sure visitors have clean footwear and clothes.
- Keep It Clean
You, your staff, and your family should follow biosecurity procedures for cleanliness. Wear clean clothes, scrub your shoes/boots with a good disinfectant then spray with ProH, and wash hands thoroughly. Keep equipment and vehicles clean and insist that all machinery and vehicles must be cleaned before entering your property.
- Don’t Haul Disease Home
If you or your family have been on other farms, at feed lots, petting zoos, auctions, or other places where there is livestock and poultry, clean and disinfect your truck or car tires and equipment before going home. If you have shown livestock or birds at a fair or exhibition, or are bringing in new animals, keep them separated from the rest of your herd or flock for 30 days after the event. Always change clothes and wash your hands before returning to your animals.
- Don’t Borrow Disease From Your Neighbor
Do not share equipment, tools, or other supplies with your neighbors or other livestock or poultry owners. If you do share these items be sure to clean them thoroughly. Use a good disinfectant followed by a good soaking of ProH before they reach your property.
- Look for Signs of Infectious Diseases
You should know what diseases are of concern for your herd or flock and be on the lookout for unusual signs or behavior, severe illness and/or sudden deaths. When possible, assess the health of your animals daily. Early detection is important to prevent the spread of disease.