UK - The British Veterinary Association (BVA) is encouraging farmers to work proactively with their vet to avoid common health concerns such as musculoskeletal conditions, infertility and mastitis.
The BVA is urging farmers to seek early treatment as a new survey revealed that these are the most common reasons for vets to be called out to farms.
The BVA Voice of the veterinary profession survey, which included 200 vets working with production animals, also revealed that over 85 per cent of production animal vets have clients who present animals later than they should. Early intervention and dynamic herd health planning are often vital in preventing more serious health concerns.
BVA President Elect and vet John Blackwell said: "Given the number of animals with musculoskeletal problems I see in my own practice I’m not surprised to hear how common they are. I’d strongly encourage farmers to work on prevention rather than cure by engaging with their vet early and developing thorough dynamic heard health planning.
"Early intervention is key with all of the most common health conditions identified by the survey so it would be great to see more monitoring, measuring and adapting to improve welfare."
BVA members who responded to the survey suggested that a substantial number of clients leave it later than they should to consult a vet. Of the 85 per cent of production animal vets who had seen animals they felt should have been presented earlier, most suspected financial reasons, owners’ attempts to treat or medicate themselves, and a lack of understanding were behind the delay. Attempts to self-diagnose and online diagnose and treat animals were also reported as problems.
In the survey 90 per cent of production animal vets believed clients’ behaviour was influenced by what they found online and 40 per cent said the information was more unhelpful than helpful.
Mr Blackwell added: "It worries me to hear that people are relying on guesswork or unverified internet sources for health advice for their animals. While there is some useful information available online the best source of information for animal health concerns will always be your vet."ThePoultrySite News Desk