Lepto – why is it still a problem?

Lepto – why is it still a problem?
By Emma Franklin, Veterinarian, Anexa Vets Matamata

Lepto, or leptospirosis to give it its full name, is a serious disease that people catch from animals (zoonosis). Farmers (and vets!) are particularly at risk of catching the disease, which can cause debilitating and long-lasting symptoms such as severe headaches, extreme tiredness, muscle pain, nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea, skin rashes, breathing problems and chest pain. In serious cases, it causes jaundice, miscarriage, renal failure, hemorrhage, and rarely, death. Severe cases can result in permanent complications and months to years in hospital.

There are several ways to reduce the risk of contracting lepto:
  • Vaccinate all animals on farm
  • Wear gloves during milking
  • Prevent direct contact with urine
  • Ear appropriate footwear on farm at all times
  • Use waterproof plasters on wounds/scratches
  • Control pests
  • No smoking, eating or drinking in the dairy shed.
Recent research carried out at Massey University, reiterates the importance of vaccination as the number one way to reduce risk to farmers, staff and families.

The farm vaccination programme must include vaccination of all ages of animals at the right time, with the right vaccine which has been stored and handled correctly.

Now is the time to get your spring-born calves vaccinated for lepto, so if you haven’t already started your calf lepto vaccinations, call your local clinic to book it in now.

The farm vaccination programme must include vaccination of all ages of animals at the right time, with the right vaccine which has been stored and handled correctly. Annual lepto boosters are important, so if your yearlings have not had their booster vaccination this year get it done soon.
If you want to know more about leptospirosis in New Zealand, talk to your Anexa vet and arrange a lepto risk assessment and watch this video http://bit.ly/Massey-lepto from Massey University outlining the latest research findings.





Date Added: Wednesday, 4th November 2020


Back...