Animal production


Animal quarantine is used when animals purchased to renew or supplement the original herd are introduced into the existing herd, e.g. heifers, bulls, gilts, boars or other reproductive animals used for further breeding and rearing.

The purpose of quarantine is to check that animals entering from a purchase are free from species-specific disease-causing micro-organisms or that animals participating in e.g. exhibitions have not come into contact with diseased individuals and infection has not occurred. The quarantine facility should prevent direct contact with farm and other animals, pets and wildlife.

The following aspects related to the purchase of new animals are important:

  • the bio-insurance status, production and reproductive performance of the supplying flock must be known,
  • newly introduced animals should not come into contact with animals of our herd,
  • sources of animal purchases should be kept to a minimum (preferably from a single herd),
  • new animals should be introduced to the farm within 1 day,
  • should be placed in the room where disinfection and disinsectisation have been carried out.

Quarantine should also be carried out for animals that have participated in breeding exhibitions and had contact with other animals. No quarantine is carried out on poultry put into fattening units or on a load of hens in laying hen flocks, due to the fact that the poultry houses are populated on an “all in – all out” basis. Quarantine time

The longer the quarantine, the more thorough the health check and the more secure the introduction of healthy animals. The recommended time is about 4-6 weeks. In the case of rabbits, it is 30 days. On large farms, quarantine staff should not be involved with the core flock during this time. In practice this is quite difficult to meet, but at least the quarantine room should be handled last each day. When you have finished working with the core flock, you should change your protective clothing and footwear and then carry out the necessary activities in the quarantine room. It is a good idea to use different coloured clothing and shoes for working with, for example, different ones for females with young and in the fattening sector, and different ones for working with quarantined animals. At the end of quarantine, the room should be thoroughly disinfected.

The quarantine period also allows the animals to recover from the stress of transport, adapt to the new conditions and, if an infection has occurred, symptoms will become apparent. Isolation also allows the veterinarian to inspect the animals, take blood samples for analysis for specific diseases and vaccinate the animals before introducing them into the herd.

Quarantine buildings should be located 2-3 km from the farm and other risk factors. Such a location is envisaged when animals of high health status are wanted. If the aim of isolation is to prevent possible contamination of the herd by contact only, the quarantine building can be located close to the farm at a distance of 100-150m.

Hierarchy of risks for introduced animals in the herd:

  • all individuals are farm-reared (i.e. a closed herd is maintained),
  • animals are purchased from herds certified as free of specific diseases,
  • animals are purchased from herds monitored for infectious diseases,
  • animals are purchased from a single source herd with a known health status,
  • animals are purchased from multiple sources with known health status,
  • animals are purchased from herds with unknown disease status or where documented cases of disease have occurred.