Objective—To characterize husbandry practices that could affect the risks of foreign animal disease in miniature swine.
Study Population—106 owners of miniature swine.
Procedures—An online survey of owners of miniature swine was conducted to obtain information about miniature pig and owner demographics; pig husbandry; movements of pigs; and pig contacts with humans, other miniature swine, and livestock.
Results—12 states, 106 premises, and 317 miniature swine were represented in the survey. More than a third (35%) of miniature swine owners also owned other livestock species. Regular contact with livestock species at other premises was reported by 13% of owners. More than a third of owners visited shows or fairs (39%) and club or association events (37%) where miniature swine were present. More than 40% of owners fed food waste to miniature swine. Approximately half (48%) of the veterinarians providing health care for miniature swine were in mixed-animal practice.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results of this study indicated that miniature swine kept as pets can be exposed, directly and indirectly, to feed and other livestock, potentially introducing, establishing, or spreading a foreign animal disease such as foot-and-mouth disease. In addition, the veterinary services and carcass disposal methods used by miniature swine owners may reduce the likelihood of sick or dead pigs undergoing ante- or postmortem examination by a veterinarian.
Objective—To estimate contact rates and movement variables for shipments of beef cattle to and from producer premises in California.
Sample Population—583 beef producers in California.
Procedures—Questionnaires were developed and distributed to beef cattle producers in California. The study period was from April 20, 2005, through September 7, 2006. Data from completed questionnaires were entered manually into an electronic format. Descriptive statistical analyses were performed.
Results—Median number of interstate animal movements (movement of cattle into or out of California) was 0.17/mo; on the basis of this median, beef cattle were moved interstate > 2 times/y. Respondents kept beef cattle at up to 5 locations throughout the year. More than 40% of the movements from the respondents' premises were to a sale yard or auction facility.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Frequency of animal movements in this statewide study differed from values in another study of monthly shipments of animals to and from beef operations in 3 counties of California. The survey reported here revealed more frequent movements of animals to and from beef operations of all sizes. In addition, there were more high-risk indirect contacts on beef operations than has been reported previously. However, the number of low-risk indirect contacts was similar for small beef operations but less for large beef operations than has been reported elsewhere. Epidemic simulation models for California based on data in earlier studies likely underpredicted disease transmission involving beef herds.