Fort Dodge Animal Health has announced that its Zulvac 8 Ovis bluetongue sheep vaccine is now licensed and available in the UK fromveterinary surgeons.

Zulvac 8 Ovis is an inactivated adjuvanted vaccine for the active immunisation of sheep by subcutaneous injection against bluetongue serotype 8. It also provides a reduction in viraemia. Administration is a two x 2 ml dose primary course in year one but only a single shot booster in the second year.

Zulvac 8 Ovis being administered using the fixed dose applicator

The use of Zulvac 8 Ovis as a booster for animals previously vaccinated with a primary course from other manufacturers is in line with DEFRA (2009) guidance, which states: “No problems are anticipated with re-vaccinating animals which have already received a primary course of vaccination with a different vaccine.”

The first dose can be administered from one month of age and the product is proven for use in pregnant sheep. The onset of immunity is provided 25 days after the second dose.

The company believes that the product will provide significant benefits to sheep farmers, providing cost savings to farmers through its pricing strategy. While the price for the two dose primary course is competitive with alternative vaccines, for animals which were vaccinated last year and require only a single shot booster, the cost will be half that of competitive offerings, providing a significant incentive to farmers to vaccinate.

The vaccine is supported by a specific fixed 2ml dose applicator with Sterimatic needle protector and cleaning system which aids administration and hygiene and is sold separately.

David Bartram, veterinary technical manager at Fort Dodge, said: “Sheep farmers have been waiting for a bluetongue vaccine which offers a cost effective solution to vaccination – particularly for animals which received their primary course last year and are simply in need of a booster. We expect the fact that it’s licensed for use in pregnant sheep to also prove attractive.

“Zulvac 8 Ovis is the latest addition to Fort Dodge’s Zulvac range for both cows and sheep. It is already used in Europe and has helped protect millions of animals.”

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