The importance of antibiotics in human and animal medicine, especially antibiotic use in food animals, cannot be understated. Resistance that develops on your farm directly affects your animals, land and family; and eventually, the animals, environments, and families of your community.
This is why it is critical that we protect the antibiotics that we have so that they work when we most need them to. Especially because animal agriculture has been implicated in the increase of antibiotic resistance due to overuse and misuse of these drugs. We (farmers, producers, veterinarians) must do our part to uphold the values of our industry as stewards of the animals and the land. We must provide a healthy product to the people we serve.
Here are a few preliminary steps that we can take to ensure we are using antibiotics judiciously in our herds:
- Work with a veterinarian to develop herd health programs that focus on preventing disease through good management practices such as biosecurity, proper nutrition, and adequate husbandry;
- If an animal does get sick, consult with a veterinarian to determine if an antibiotic is needed and; if so which one is the best choice;
- Follow the FDA guidance and the veterinary prescription to use antibiotics in the properly route, dose, and frequency for the disease
The Food Armor Foundation is an upstanding organization with the mission of providing antimicrobial stewardship education and accreditation services to food animal veterinarians and farmers to safeguard animal, public, and environmental health and welfare. If you are interested in free online courses ($75 value) to improve antimicrobial use on your farm, please contact email@example.com for a coupon code to any of their outstanding on-demand classes.