Animal Diseases

The types of animal disease that present most risk are those that are highly contagious and cause high fatality rates amongst livestock.  In addition there are those animal diseases that have the potential to spread from animal to human causing illness or fatalities.

Experience demonstrates that animal diseases can have serious consequences for the farming industry in the Gwent area.  Movement and travel restrictions introduced to minimise the spread of disease can damage rural industry and also the wider economy.

Possible Consequences:

  • Risk to animal health
  • Health risks to humans, particular workers in the livestock industry
  • Damage to the local agricultural economy
  • Mass cull/disposal of animal carcasses
  • Loss of livelihoods for farmers and farm workers
  • Knock on effect on tourism and other service industries
  • Long term psychological health impacts experienced by farmers
  • Possible increase in food costs to consumers

What are we doing in Gwent?

  • Local authorities and veterinary services are continuously screening and monitoring animal health and movement of livestock
  • Develop procedures for local delivery of Welsh Government exotic animal disease plans and animal health frameworks
  • Raise disease awareness amongst farmers and farm workers
  • Receive and monitor Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) animal disease alerts

What can you do?

  • Register any livestock which you own with Welsh Government/APHA
  • All owners are responsible for the health and welfare of livestock in their care and need to understand and provide for their physical and welfare needs
  • Maintain good disease prevention and control practices
  • As early as possible report any suspicion of animal disease with the APHA. Discuss any concerns with your veterinary surgeon
  • Vaccinate livestock where possible
  • If an outbreak is declared then follow any guidance from the government at the time to protect your livestock and limit the spread of disease.

For more information:

The lead agency for animal health and disease is the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).  The APHA is an executive agency sponsored by DEFRA, Welsh Government and the Scottish Government.  The APHA along with Welsh Government produce useful information and guidance which can be found on their respective websites.

Defra is able to offer more advice on animal diseases to those concerned. While the Welsh Government has a contingency plan in place - Welsh Government Contingency Plan for Exotic Animal Diseases – for dealing with outbreaks.