Vaccination best practice for farm animals in Hampshire and Dorset
Disease prevention and using medicines properly has always played a vital part in farm & livestock management. At Pilgrims Vets we believe that health planning for a herd or flock is crucial in maintaining high welfare standards and reducing the financial impact of disease on a farm.
For nearly 90 years vaccines have been making a material contribution to the health, welfare & productivity of farm animals and they remain the first line of defence against a spectrum of diseases.
Nine vaccination principles every farmer should follow
What follows are the nine guiding principles that underpin a successful vaccination programme. If you don’t understand your existing programme or know that you don’t have a plan at all, then we’d encourage you to get in touch with us and book a Vaccination Consultation with one of our farm vets.
·Always read the Vaccination Data Sheet
Sometimes called the Summary of Product Characteristics (SPC) sheet, you should read the sheet each time as important factors can change, even on the same medicine.
·Store your medicines properly
Store & secure all medicine in appropriate containers at the correct temperature. Store & use in date order and never use out of date vaccines. Avoid over-ordering vaccines.
·Ensure personal safety when vaccinating
Make sure you have the right number of people to vaccinate safely. Make sure the vaccinator is fully trained and if self-injection occurs, get immediate medical assistance.
·Only vaccinate suitably prepared animals
Only vaccinate normal healthy, calm, clean & dry animals that are immunocompetent (able to produce a normal immune response) and at the right age / stage of pregnancy.
·Follow the correct vaccination procedure
Always follow the correct administration route & complete the course at the right dose, interval and frequency. Do the same for boosters – essential to maintain protection.
·Prepare the vaccination properly
Follow the advice on the data sheet and double check; dose, dilution and administration route. Use the right equipment and make sure it’s clean/sterile/sharp. Ensure the vaccine does not come into contact with anything that may inactivate it.
·Vaccinate in the prescribed manner
Ensure the animal is adequately and safely restrained. If it’s not, do not administer. Ensure the correct route is used and that any injection site is clean and dry.
·Record the vaccination properly
A properly completed animal medicine record must be kept on every farm, alongside copies of relevant regulations. Record keeping is essential so if you need advice please call us.
·Dispose of leftover vaccination materials properly
Dispose of excess vaccine, left over containers and administration equipment, in accordance with the vaccine data or equipment instruction sheet.
·All farmers, stock-keepers and herdsmen have a responsibility to safeguard the health & welfare of their animals.
The farm team at Pilgrims Vets are always happy to help you if you have any queries relating to the health of your animals and maintaining your compliance with any farm assurance schemes you may be subject to.