The State Veterinarian's Office and GDA's Animal Industry team work to prevent, control, and eradicate many infectious and communicable diseases of livestock and other domestic animals. To this end, we provide information to farmers and veterinarians, gather reports of animal diseases within the State, monitor animal sales and exhibitions, and help producers register for animal disease traceablity programs.
We are responsible for monitoring, detecting, and controlling over 100 animal diseases that can have a significant impact on the agricultural economy and trade, or that can be contagious to both animals and people. These are known as Reportable Animal Diseases.
We maintain extensive surveillance programs for foreign animal diseases, such as highly pathogenic avian influenza and exotic Newcastle disease in poultry, and foot-and-mouth disease and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (i.e. mad cow disease) in cattle. We also monitor animal diseases that are endemic to the area, such as Johnes disease in ruminants, equine infectious anemia in equine, and scrapie in sheep and goats.
As part of this surveillance, GDA staff inspect animals and collect samples for testing at livestock markets, slaughter facilities, equine sales establishments, flea markets, and animal exhibitions.
We also regulate the transportation of animals, disposal of animal carcasses, and the rendering of animal tissues into animal feeds, all of which are vital components of an overall animal health program.