Protecting Animal Health

Our Animal Health business addresses the world’s biggest animal health challenges and works with our customers to answer their specific needs.

Highlights
  • Sponsored and mentored students alongside mentors from the Centers for Disease Control and Mission Rabies at the Cornell Animal Health Hackathon
  • The Unwanted Horse Veterinary Relief Campaign donated 3,500 doses of core vaccines to horses in need at 191 nonprofit equine rescue and retirement facilities
  • Announced 10 years of key findings from the ongoing Equine Respiratory Biosurveillance Program
Our commitments

We seek to vaccinate 400,000 dogs in Bali for rabies through the Dharma Program in 2020.

Our approach

As a global animal health company, we are committed to addressing diseases that cross geographical boundaries and cause emotional and economic hardship. Animal health and human health are inextricably linked: highly infectious diseases have a direct impact on food production and the livelihood of farming families, leading to malnutrition and poverty, while zoonotic diseases directly impact human health.

Global factors such as trade, migration of humans and animals, and climate contribute to the spread of highly infectious diseases such as foot-and-mouth disease, lumpy skin disease, African swine fever, peste des petits ruminants and zoonotic diseases such as avian flu and rabies.

Tackling human-animal health emergencies through greater veterinary capacity and response appropriate to local contexts are core components of the World Organisation for Animal Health’s (OIE) Sixth Strategic Plan.

Working in partnerships with others, including:
  • Bali Animal Welfare Association (BAWA)
  • South African National Parks and Pit-Track

Programs and initiatives

Bringing new solutions to one health

Outbreaks and emerging diseases
Our company is committed to working with animal health’s most challenging pathogens like foot-and-mouth disease and African swine fever, and we support research awards for these diseases. We aim to engage with stakeholders and governments to identify disease management gaps, improve scientific knowledge and lend support through training and industry expertise.

Our disease response activities take place in both disease-free and endemic regions around the world. Over the past year, our International Veterinary Health team brought solutions to countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East through tenders and projects targeted to improve the knowledge to help against diseases including lumpy skin disease, rabies, and bovine tuberculosis. In addition, they worked with intergovernmental organizations on projects to address vaccine security, eliminate rabies, and improve the animal health infrastructure in Africa.

eMergence
Through our eMergence digital channels we share the latest news on emerging and spreading animal diseases with veterinarians, farmers and those curious to learn more about animal health, and include information from organizations like the World Health Organization, Food and Agriculture Organization, and World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).

Animal Health Hackathon
Our Animal Health business brings along tomorrow’s animal health innovators. In 2019, our International Veterinary Health department sponsored and mentored students alongside mentors from the Centers for Disease Control and Mission Rabies at the Cornell Animal Health Hackathon. The Animal Health Hackathon was a multidisciplinary and multi-college event, over two days, to task students with solving animal health challenges.

Two teams at the event took up our Animal Health business’ challenge on how to improve vaccination rates of dogs in Africa. By joining our business’ knowledge of field challenges with the students’ knowledge of new technologies, the teams were able to develop innovative approaches to solving complex animal health problems. This event provided students with real-world issues to see how their learning and education can be applied and supports future leaders in animal health. We look forward to taking part in similar future events.

Joining the fight against wildlife poaching
South Africa holds nearly 80 percent of the world’s rhinos and is one of the countries most heavily impacted by poaching crime.1 The number of rhinos killed for their horns has decreased annually since 2015, but at the current poaching rate, some of our rhino populations cannot keep pace and are in decline. In 2019, there were nearly 600 recorded poaching incidents of rhinos in South Africa.2 In the Kruger National Park, 2,014 incursions and poaching activities were recorded in 2019, with 327 rhinos and 30 elephants lost. The Kwa-Zulu Natal Province recorded the second highest loss of 133 rhinos in 2019.3 The battle to end poaching is far from over.

Our Animal Health business supports canine conservation organizations in the fight against poaching in South Africa. Canine conservation organizations protect vulnerable wildlife through training dogs to track and guard in order to defend against incursion and poaching activities in the parks. Our company is involved with two organizations, the Addo region of the South African National Parks and Pit-Track, who have anti-poaching units operating in three locations: The Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary, Zululand Conservation Trust and the greater Kruger National Park. We have assisted these canine conservation teams with donations of BRAVECTO® for all of the dogs in their units for the past two years. As these dogs are working actively in tick-infested environments in the parks, they need tick protection to keep them healthy on the job.

Caring for Bali’s community canines
Dogs are common members of the community in Bali, Indonesia, and often roam free around their owners’ homes or further into their neighborhoods. Their social lifestyle, however, can make it difficult for owners to maintain their dogs’ wellness and prevent rabies. Dogs with common preventable health conditions, like scabies, are often mistakenly believed to be presenting with clinical signs of rabies, leading to their rejection from their home.

To address this challenge, in 2019 our companion animal commercial business and International Veterinary Health team partnered with the Bali Animal Welfare Association (BAWA) in a project called Program Dharma. Program Dharma is a collaboration between Udayana University’s Department of Public Health and Faculty of Veterinary Science, BAWA, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and the Centre for Public Health Initiative (CPHI). The Program applies One Health principles to improve the welfare of dogs in Balinese communities and protect human health through rabies disease awareness and education on how to prevent the disease through canine vaccination.

Through the Dharma Program, we have worked with BAWA to track the recovery progress of dogs treated with BRAVECTO® for parasite irritants, while educating members of the community about rabies, how the disease can be identified, and how it can be prevented with annual vaccination. These efforts are not only contributing to improved overall wellness for Balinese dogs but are also positively impacting public health on the island. We look forward to continued partnership with BAWA and the Bali Government to expand this initiative to include rabies vaccinations. With vaccinations beginning in 2020, our goal is to vaccinate 400,000 dogs in Bali for rabies through this partnership.

Health and welfare of horses

The health and welfare of horses is important to our company, and we support initiatives that enable access to care for horses in all activities: from competing to companionship. We are proud to dedicate a portion of all equine vaccine sales to support the donation of equine vaccines to qualifying equine rescue and retirement facilities.

Since the beginning of the program in 2008, we have contributed more than $1.1 million in vaccine donations to the Unwanted Horse Veterinary Relief Campaign (UHVRC) in partnership with the American Association of Equine Practitioners. Horses may be relinquished or retired for a wide variety of reasons, but still require high standards of care to protect their wellbeing. The equine rescue and retirement facilities we support may receive complimentary vaccines to protect their horses’ health and help make them more adoptable.

Over the course of the program’s history, more than 32,000 horses have been vaccinated. In 2019, the UHVRC donated 3,500 doses of core vaccines to horses in need at 191 nonprofit equine rescue and retirement facilities.

In 2019, our company announced 10 years of key findings from its ongoing Equine Respiratory Biosurveillance Program. Recognized as the largest equine infectious respiratory biosurveillance study ever compiled, and comprising one of the largest collections of equine influenza isolates in the United States, the program has provided new information on the major infectious respiratory disease threats that has shaped industry management and preventative strategies.

The comprehensive, ongoing national surveillance study is managed in partnership with University of California, Davis to monitor equine herpesvirus types 1 and 4 (EHV-1, EHV-4), equine influenza virus (EIV) and Streptococcus equi (S. equi or strangles), which have been tracked from the inception of the program, and equine rhinitis A/B viruses (ERAV/ERBV), added in 2012.

Findings from the Equine Respiratory Biosurveillance Program are reported on a bi-weekly basis through the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC) at www.equinediseasecc.org/news. In addition, our company publishes a bi-annual newsletter highlighting cumulative and six-month disease trends. Over the course of the program, findings have been published in five peer-reviewed papers, with 10 abstracts presented at four national and six international conferences.