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Animal Disease

Animal Disease

There have been a number of cases of significant animal disease in Wales over the past decade, with foot and mouth disease in 2001 being the most noticeable example and a high level of endemic bovine TB.

Recent years have seen a number of small-scale examples of animal disease including:

Avian flu

A highly contagious disease in birds. An outbreak of low pathogenic H7 N2 avian influenza occurred in North Wales during May 2007, which also resulted in 17 human cases.


An insect-borne viral disease which can be caught by all species of ruminants. Cases of the disease appeared in first Wales during 2008. Two imported cattle tested positive for Bluetongue type 8 in Ruthin, Denbighshire in September 2009.

Bovine Tuberculosis (TB)

A chronic, debilitating, infectious disease. It has a significant impact on the health and welfare of the national cattle herd in Wales, and the rest of the UK. It is transmissible to humans and other mammals including badgers, deer and camelids, which means it has serious implications beyond the health of cattle. The incidence of bovine TB continues to have a serious impact on the farming industry, but also the Government and taxpayer in Wales as compensation is paid for livestock culled.

Risk impacts include:

  • Damage to Welsh Livestock Industry
  • Damage to the wider rural community
  • Loss of livelihood to farmers and farm workers
  • If the disease is zoonotic (transmissible to humans) there is a human health risk to agricultural workers and potentially the wider human population

If you become concerned about the health of your livestock you should immediately contact your local Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency.

To find your local Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories visit the Welsh Government website- Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Offices.