Key information geared to reducing the damaging affects of footrot insheep is available in a new management guide published byIntervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health.
In addition to explaining the highly infectious nature of the disease and the areas of lost productivity resulting, the new guide outlines a strategic whole flock approach, including positive farmer experiences of preventative vaccination. It also covers correct procedures for foot paring and foot bathing and highlights the important issue of flock security.
In her introduction, independent sheep specialist Lesley Stubbings describes footrot as one of the most important health and welfare issues facing UK sheep farmers.
Ineffectively controlled, footrot causes visible pain, reduces performance, and costs the sheep industry millions of pounds a year in terms of labour, treatments and premature culling, she says.
The good news is that through a well-planned footrot control programme it is possible to break the disease cycle, and this will pay dividends.
It is vital to diagnose the causes of lameness accurately in the first instance, and then in the case of footrot most specifically deal with the problem on a whole flock basis. Treating individual sheep alone can often lead to disappointing results.
Copies of the new guide are available from the Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health Veterinary Services Support Group by calling 01908 685685.