Veterinary advice should be sought before applying any treatment or vaccine.

Footrot is a contagious, debilitating, inflammatory bacterial disease. It is caused by Dichelobacter nodosus and Fusobacterium necrophorum bacterium. Footrot affects sheep and goats and is more prevalent in warm, moist climates. Goats are more susceptible to footrot when their feet are overdue for trimming. It also happens more often in herds living in overcrowded housing.

Footrot is often referred to as benign footrot when clinical signs are mild, and virulent footrot when infection is severe. The severity depends on the virulence of the infecting bacterial strain, climatic conditions, and the breed of goats.

5 to 10% of goats become chronic carriers of footrot. Once the herd becomes infected with hoofrot, it is difficult to eradicate.

Transmission: Footrot is usually spread through direct or indirect contact with a carrier animal or their droppings. Footrot can also be spread through fomites (equipment, clothing, tires, etc.).

Symptoms

Mild interdigital dermatitis
Lameness
Severe underrunning of the horn of the hoof
Foot lesions

Diagnosis

  • History - recent new addition to the herd
  • Clinical signs

Treatment

Treatment TypeDetails
Foot bathsSoak feet using zinc sulfate
Oxytetracycline, long-acting20 mg/kg SC or IM once

Prevention

  • Do not purchase goats or sheep from flocks which have a history of footrot infections
  • Quarantine new animals for at least 30 days before introducing them to the herd.
  • Maintain a sanitary, clean housing environment for the herd
  • Maintain routine foot trimming of herd

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