About Dairy Wellness

Salmonella: Know your dairy's risk
Posted by Gary Neubauer

Salmonellosis is an economically devastating disease for the dairy industry. In 2014, the National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) reported at least one sample of Salmonella to be exhibited on 39.2% of dairy operations. 1 Larger dairies with more than 500 head of milking cows were determined to be more likely infected with Salmonella than operations with 30 to 99 cows, 62% versus 26% respectively.1 The largest percentages of Salmonella-positive samples were from manure pits, alleyways, pens, parlor holding areas and calf housing.1

Among the challenges of a Salmonella outbreak on a dairy are how quickly the disease can spread and that it can spread from animal to animal for months without detection if not controlled.

Determine your risk of Salmonella.
Take a big step in the right direction in preventing an outbreak on your operation by using the Salmonella Risk Assessment. The tool helps determine the risk factors your dairy may have and can help you develop your personal Salmonella Reduction Plan. While taking the assessment, your answers about on-farm hygiene, accessibility and animal health practices provide a personalized Salmonella Reduction Plan that can be printed or emailed to your herd veterinarian. With each answer you provide in the assessment, the tool provides feedback to help you formulate a better plan for your operation to reduce risk. Here is a sampling of questions from the assessment:

  • Does your dairy have standard procedures for colostrum and calf milk management?
  • Do you enforce biosecurity measures for salesmen, veterinarians, nutritionists, hoof trimmers, artificial insemination (AI) technicians and other personnel who visit several farms each day?
  • Does your dairy clean the alleyways via flushing or scraping?
  • Do you share employees with other operations, or do your employees live with others who work on another dairy?
  • Do you routinely vaccinate your herd for Salmonella?

Zoetis is committed to providing you with solutions to help you reduce the chance of an infectious outbreak on your dairy. For more information on ways to reduce your risk of Salmonella, visit

1 J. Anim. Sci. Vol. 93, Suppl. s3/J. Dairy Sci. Vol. 98, Suppl. 2



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