5 Point Plan

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5 Point Plan To Tackle Sheep Lameness
CULL badly or repeatedly affected animals AVOID propagation of infection on farm TREAT clinical cases promptly QUARANTINE incoming animals VACCINATE biannually

CULL badly or repeatedly affected animals

Relevance:
By removing worst offenders, flock resilience to disease is increased. Ewes with chronic misshapen feet likely to be a source of infection.

Implementation:
Ewes treated more than once for footrot or scald should be cull tagged.
“Two strikes and you’re out” policy. Cull ewes with misshapen chronic feet.

AVOID propagation of infection on farm

Relevance:
Reduce the opportunities for the disease to spread sheep to sheep via the ground, periods of close contact are high risk.

Implementation:
Identify opportunities for improvement in underfoot conditions, both in the field/barn and in the handling set up and frequency.

TREAT clinical cases promptly

Relevance:
To alleviate disease in the individual animal, and to reduce disease transmission to others.

Implementation:
Identify and rapidly treat lame animals in the whole flock. Use a simple scoring system to regularly select animals and target treatment.

QUARANTINE incoming animals

Relevance:
Minimising overall disease challenge for incoming and existing animals, allowing time for inclusion to vaccination and management programme.

Implementation:
Develop robust quarantine procedure to protect both existing ewes and the newcomers.

VACCINATE biannually

Relevance:
Build immunity in breeding stock, vaccination gives additional protection at high risk times.

Implementation:
Initially vaccinate all breeding stock biannually, timing doses to coincide with high-risk times such as housing and late summer.