In 1998 the Swedish Veterinary Association decided to adopt a general policy for the use of antibiotics in animals. Since then specific policies for the use of antibiotics in dogs and cats have been adopted and in 2011 Guidelines for the use of Antibiotics in Production animals – Cattle and Pigs, were accepted. By decision of the board of the Swedish Veterinary Society (SVS) these guidelines have been updated.
The over-arching goal of SVS is to achieve a low and controlled use of antibiotics in Swedish animal production so that the first-hand choices of treatment remain efficient and that the spread of antimicrobial resistance – among animals and herds as well as in the food chain – is kept at a minimum. Keeping antimicrobial resistance in animals low is important also for human health, since we are all part of the same ecosystem. The authors of these guidelines hope that they may be useful for veterinarians in clinical practice when deciding on treatments for common diseases and ailments caused by bacteria. Sometimes the decision may even be to refrain from use of antibiotics and chose other ways of improving herd health.
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Diseases in goats
Ylva Persson, DVM, PhD
In Sweden only one antimicrobial is registered for use in goats – benzyl penicillin procaine (BPP) (Penovet®, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, FASS VET. Sweden 2015). All other drugs for therapy need to conform to the EU cascade principle. Since goats might react with strong pain to injections with tetracycline other antimicrobials should be preferred if BPP cannot be expected to be effective.
Mastitis is the most important production disease in goat milk herds. Good udder health is important for animal welfare as well as from food safety aspects. The most frequently isolated udder pathogens in dairy goats in Sweden are Staphylo coccus (S.) aureus and coagulase negative staphylococci (CNS). Subclinical mastitis is seen more often than clinical.
Milk samples for bacteriological culture should be taken from the udder half with symptoms of clinical mastitis – swollen gland and changed milk. California Mastitis Test (CMT) can be used to diagnose subclinical mastitis. Samples are taken from udder halves with a CMT reaction >2. Milk samples from cases of subclinical mastitis should be sent to an accredited laboratory in a suitable medium – chilled if possible.
The therapy of choice for cases of acute, clinical mastitis in goats is systemic injections of BPP dosed at 20 mg/kg, im SID for five days. If S. aureus has been identified as the etiological agent the parenteral treatment may be combined with short-acting intramammaries containing penicillin, infused in the affected udder half SID for five days. Intramammaries should be infused after milking and the kids should not be allowed to suckle the doe until two hours have passed. Antimicrobial therapy can be supported by extra milkings, injections of oxytocin to stimulate milk let-down and NSAID depending on symptoms.
Animals with chronic clinical or exacerbated mastitis or mastitis caused by E. coli or beta-lactamas producing staphylococci should not be treated with antibiotics for reasons stated above (poor prognosis, non-prudent use of antibiotics and risk of propagating antimicrobial resistance in herds). Subclinical mastitis could be treated with long-acting intramammaries containing penicillin in both udder parts at drying off. Aseptic principles must be used when administering intramammary tubes and care must be taken not to damage the teat canals.
Read more about Metritis, Septicemia, Enteritis, Arthritis, diseases of feet and claws, Pneumonia, Listeriosis, infections of the eye. Download a copy here.
Special thanks to Dr. Ylva Persson, IGA’s Country Representative in Sweden, for bringing this document to our attention.