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Increased Communication, Biosecurity Credited with Helping Contain PED

18 November 2015, at 12:00am

CANADA - An Alberta based swine veterinarian says, as the weather turns colder, the risk of transmission of various pathogens will increase, writes Bruce Cochrane.

In response to the risk posed by Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea, Alberta Pork is preparing to introduce a biocontainment plan which pork producers will be able to customize for their farms to be triggered in the event they suspect PED.

Dr Kurt Preugschas, a veterinarian with Innovative Veterinary Services, who helped develop the plan, says key steps include contacting your veterinarian immediately when a disease is suspected because an early diagnosis will offer the best possible chance to minimize the spread, informing all service providers that would be in contact with or may have visited your farm and communicating with neighbors.

Dr Kurt Preugschas-Innovative Veterinary Services:

In the past we've focused a great deal on external biosecurity over the last years because keeping diseases out of the farm is obviously the most critical step for every individual producer and, as an industry, we've done an excellent job of making biosecurity a priority but we've spent less time on biocontainment which is a critical step for overall health of the industry.

If we can limit the number of farms affected by a disease, for example PED, through excellent biocontainment protocols this will ensure the long term viability of the industry.

Over the past few years Alberta or I should say western Canada or Canada even for that matter but definitely Alberta have had several programs related to biosecurity and in this past year, PED, we've also had a further program for biosecurity and I would say they've been very open I think that's why our health status remains so good.

Dr Preugschas says PED and many other bugs including PRRS and other pathogens are happiest when it's cool so cleaning transport vehicles and maintaining biosecurity becomes much more difficult.

He says we know there's higher risk at this time of year so the release of this biocontainment plan will be particularly timely.

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