Animal Health and Welfare

Disease Control and Notifiable Diseases

Disease Control - Biosecurity 

The aim of biosecurity is to prevent disease being transmitted to or from premises where livestock are kept. Disease causing agents can be present in animals' breath, faeces, urine, semen, milk, nasal secretions and saliva.  Contaminated bedding, pens and equipment are also sources of infection.  

Good hygiene practices are the key to biosecurity; this reduces the risk of your livestock being infected by new disease and improves farm profitability.  Using the expertise of your veterinary surgeon and developing a written farm health plan can improve the health of your livestock. 

A significant amount of livestock legislation is designed to reduce the risk of disease spread, and touches on biosecurity: movement standstill periods, cleaning livestock vehicles, licensing of movements etc.


Disease is spread by 

Reducing the risk

Contact with other animals

Don't allow contact with your neighbours' animals, maintain fences.

Movement of animals and the introduction of new animals

Ask about the disease status of any stock you buy, keep them isolated from your other animals, plan and implement treatments (discuss with your vet).

Contamination by vermin

Implement a pest control programme

Visitors people and vehicles

Ensure visitors wash and disinfect, especially if they handle your livestock (e.g. vets, A.I. technicians).

Shared equipment

Try not to share veterinary equipment.  Thoroughly clean any shared equipment.

Contaminated water, pasture and bedding

Keep water troughs clean, rest pastures.


Clean boots, hands and clothing.  Be especially vigilant at markets and other farms, disinfect YOURSELF!

The major biosecurity risk is sometimes overlooked: the farmer himself!  Risk factors cannot be reduced if the farmer does not actively manage them.  What the farmer does off farm is also significant: visits to markets and other animal gatherings and farms are major sources of risk if proper precautions are not made.

"Remember the 4 Vs: Visitors, vets, vermin and vehicles"

Notifiable Diseases

Pembrokeshire County Council has a responsibility to prevent the spread of Notifiable Animal Diseases, such as Foot and Mouth, Bluetongue, Anthrax, Rabies and Avian Influenza. In the event of a notifiable disease outbreak it is essential that Council can provide a rapid and effective response.

To do this the Animal Welfare Team has a Generic Notifiable Animal Disease Contingency Plan which is to be used in conjunction with annexes that relate to individual animal diseases and details our specific role for that disease.

Notifiable Animal Diseases:

Should an outbreak occur

In the event of a notifiable animal disease occurring in Pembrokeshire the Animal Health and Welfare Team, in conjunction with DEFRA and other relevant bodies, will be major role players in the containment and control of any such outbreak.

If you suspect a Notifiable Disease Outbreak

You can contact the Council on 01437 764551 or 01437 771891 (out of hours emergency)

The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) helpline on 08459 33 55 77


ID: 2435, revised 12/09/2022