ODA encourages increased monitoring of livestock following influenza diagnosis

The Ohio Department of Agriculture is encouraging fair exhibitors to closely monitor livestock after a recent diagnosis of H3N2 influenza at a county fair in Southwest Ohio.

Spokesman Mark Bruce tells Brownfield animals that appear to be sick need to be looked at immediately.  “If they see anything that looks out of whack or doesn’t look right or if the animal just doesn’t look healthy, isn’t eating correctly or just looks hot – contact a barn superintendent and fair veterinarian right away.”

And he says fairs are still safe, but visitors to the barns also need to practice good hygiene.  “Wash your hands after you’ve gone into the barn,” he says.  “Don’t take food into the barn and strollers shouldn’t go into any livestock barns at the fairs.

As a safety precaution, nearly 300 hogs, including breeding stock, had to be taken to market following the detection of H3N2 at the Clinton County fair last week.

Influenza does not pose a food safety risk and frequent hand-washing can lower risk of getting infected.

AUDIO: Mark Bruce, ODA

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