Utah Department of Agriculture and Food

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., State Veterinarian
(801) 538-7162
(801) 538-7169 fax

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IMPORTANT! If you are applying for a Hatchery license for waterfowl or gamebirds, please be aware that you must also apply for a Certificate of Registration (COR) with Utah Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife Resources.


Reportable Diseases

Any person who discovers, suspects, or has reason to believe that animals are either affected with a reportable disease or contaminated with a toxic substance shall immediately report that fact, suspicion, or belief to the State Veterinarian, Utah Department of Agriculture 350 N. Redwood Road, Box 146500, Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-6500, (801) 538-7161.






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This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., State Veterinarian
(801) 538-7162
(801) 538-7169 fax

Mission Statement

We serve the people of Utah in the following ways:

  • Protection of the public from disease of animal origin (zoonosis).
  • Protection of the animal population from disease.
  • Protection of the livestock industry from disease loss.
  • Facilitating export and marketability of Utah products.


Animal Health - What we do

  • Implement and enforce import health requirements for animals
  • Issue licenses and certify disease status of flocks and herds
  • Administer disease control programs
  • Coordinate animal disease reporting efforts
  • Perform epidemiological investigations
  • Implement and coordinate emergency response to disease outbreaks
  • Provide animal disease testing
  • Perform export inspections and certification of export products
  • Oversight of veterinary inspections at livestock auction markets
  • Offer training and outreach to veterinarians and technicians
  • Provide consultation on wildlife diseases


The two most important things you can do to reduce the spread of West Nile Virus are to:

  • Eliminate mosquito breeding sites on your property
  • Reduce exposure to adult mosquitoes, not only for yourself and your family, but also for your animals

Since mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water, reducing or eliminating standing water sources will help to keep mosquitoes on your property to a minimum. Mosquitoes may breed in any puddle that lasts for more than four days.

Here are some steps you can take to minimize standing water:

  • Dispose of old tires - they are an excellent mosquito breeding location
  • Keep rain gutters and downspouts clear of leaves and other debris
  • Repair leaky outdoor faucets, pumps, drains, livestock waterers, and similar devices
  • Fill or drain any areas on your property that typically collect water
  • Discard any unneeded objects that could hold water, such as cans, bottles, or flower pots
  • Change water in birdbaths, pet dishes, drip trays, and similar items at least once a week
  • Turn over wheelbarrows, wading pools and other water-collecting equipment when not in use
  • Keep trash containers covered
  • Drill holes in the bottom of containers that cannot be discarded and must be left outdoors
  • Keep swimming pools properly maintained, and cover when not in use. Be sure pool covers cannot hold pockets of water
  • Remove tree stumps that can hold water
  • Consider aerating ornamental ponds or stocking them with fish (fish will eat mosquito larvae)
  • Remind or help neighbors to eliminate breeding sites on their properties
  • Ask for help from your local mosquito control authority - they can assess the exposure risks for your property and offer suggestions for mosquito control

Protect yourself and your family from exposure to mosquitoes by doing the following:

  • Make sure that the windows and doors of your home have screens, and that they are in good repair
  • Take normal steps to prevent insect bites
  • Wear shoes, socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods of time, or when mosquitoes are most active (between dusk and dawn)
  • Consider the use of mosquito repellent, according to directions, when it is necessary to be outdoors. Wash all treated skin and clothing when returning indoors

Minimize the Exposure

  • Avoid turning on lights inside the stable during the evening and overnight hours. Mosquitoes are attracted to yellow incandescent bulbs.
  • If light is needed near the stable, place incandescent bulbs outside the stable to attract mosquitoes away from the horses. Black lights (bug zappers) don't attract mosquitoes well.
  • Reduce the number of birds in and around the stable area. Eliminate roosting areas in the rafters of the stable. Certain species of wild birds (crows, jays, magpies, and ravens) are thought to be the main reservoir for the virus. Although pigeons have been shown to become infected with West Nile Virus, they do not appear to act as reservoirs and therefore don’t transmit the virus to mosquitoes.
  • Periodically look around the property for dead birds, such as crows. Any suspicious birds should be reported to the Utah Department of Health, Bureau of Epidemiology at 1-801-538-6191. Use gloves to handle dead birds and place the birds in plastic bags, as directed by the Department of Health.
  • Topical preparations containing mosquito repellents are available for horses. Read the product label before using.
  • Fogging of stable premises can be done in the evening to reduce mosquitoes; read directions carefully before using.
  • Source: Pennsylvania Department of Health

For additional information:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced a final rule establishing general regulations for improving the traceability of U.S. livestock moving interstate.

"With the final rule announced today, the United States now has a flexible, effective animal disease traceability system for livestock moving interstate, without undue burdens for ranchers and U.S. livestock businesses," said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. "The final rule meets the diverse needs of the countryside where states and tribes can develop systems for tracking animals that work best for them and their producers, while addressing any gaps in our overall disease response efforts. Over the past several years, USDA has listened carefully to America's farmers and ranchers, working collaboratively to establish a system of tools and safeguards that will help us target when and where animal diseases occur, and help us respond quickly."

Under the final rule, unless specifically exempted, livestock moved interstate would have to be officially identified and accompanied by an interstate certificate of veterinary inspection or other documentation, such as owner-shipper statements or brand certificates.

After considering the public comments received, the final rule has several differences from the proposed rule issued in August 2011. These include:

  • Accepting the use of brands, tattoos and brand registration as official identification when accepted by the shipping and receiving States or Tribes
  • Permanently maintaining the use of backtags as an alternative to official eartags for cattle and bison moved directly to slaughter
  • Accepting movement documentation other than an Interstate Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (ICVI) for all ages and classes of cattle when accepted by the shipping and receiving States or Tribes
  • Clarifying that all livestock moved interstate to a custom slaughter facility are exempt from the regulations
  • Exempting chicks moved interstate from a hatchery from the official identification requirements

Beef cattle under 18 months of age, unless they are moved interstate for shows, exhibitions, rodeos, or recreational events, are exempt from the official identification requirement in this rule. These specific traceability requirements for this group will be addressed in separate rulemaking, allowing APHIS to work closely with industry to ensure the effective implementation of the identification requirements.

View more specific details about the regulation and how it will affect producers.

Animal disease traceability, or knowing where diseased and at-risk animals are, where they've been, and when, is very important to ensure a rapid response when animal disease events take place. An efficient and accurate animal disease traceability system helps reduce the number of animals involved in an investigation, reduces the time needed to respond, and decreases the cost to producers and the government.

This notice is expected to be published in the December 28, 2012 Federal Register.

For questions concerning these requirements, please contact UDAF Animal Industry - Brands Division at (801) 538-7137.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., State Veterinarian
(801) 538-7162
(801) 538-7169 fax

In response to requests from the Utah Cattleman's Association and Utah Farm Bureau, Utah animal health regulations now require all resident bulls over nine months of age and bulls entering Utah, to be tested negative for trichomoniasis. This testing is to be done by an accredited veterinarian. All bulls tested will be tagged with a current Official State of Utah Trichomoniasis test tag to allow for permanent identification. Any bulls testing positive are prohibited from sale as breeding animals and must go to slaughter within 10 days. Any bulls purchased for breeding purposes must be tested negative for trichomoniasis prior to change of ownership and before exposure to any cows.

What is Trichomoniasis?

Trichomoniasis is a venereally transmitted disease of cattle which results in varying degrees of reproductive inefficiency (usually early embryonic death). Since it causes no alarming clinical signs, it often goes undetected for long periods. The trichomonad is a protozoan that lives in the crypts (wrinkles or folds) on the mucosal surface of the penis and prepuce of the bull. These organisms are transmitted to the cow by breeding. At breeding the sperm fertilizes the ovum, and the embryo begins its development. After a few days, this embryo attaches to the uterine wall where the circulation necessary for its nourishment and growth begins to develop. If the cow was exposed to trichomonads at the time of breeding, these tiny protozoa grow and multiply on the lining of the uterus, causing an inflammation (metritis) which eventually disrupts the placental circulation supplying nutrients to the new embryo. Death of the embryo follows. This usually takes place within the first 30-60 days of pregnancy. The cow then expels (or absorbs) the dead embryo which is very small and typically goes undetected. The only clinical manifestation may be a uterine infection with minimal vaginal discharge. The cow's immune system usually responds to the trichomonads and eliminates them from the reproductive tract. This takes place in 90-100 days with the return of the estrus cycles of the female. Then the cow can breed back and carry the new fetus to term (late calver). Although infection does stimulate immunity, it is not durable and the cow may be fully susceptible by the next breeding season. In rare cases, a cow can calve normally and remain a carrier. A number are rendered infertile, with some developing an accumulation of pus in the reproductive tract (Pyometra). This manifests as an unusually high number of open cows and a few with bad uteruses at pregnancy checking time. The infection in the bull is completely without clinical signs. The crypts or folds in the mucous lining of the penis and prepuce provide the necessary environment for replication of the trichomonads. As a bull matures these crypts become more pronounced, providing a more suitable environment for the trichomonads. While the trichomonads grow in these crypts, they do not stimulate the bull's immune system, thus the bull remains infected. Bulls may become infected by breeding a cow which was just bred by an infected bull or by breeding a cow which has trichomonal metritis. The most infective time is during this metritis phase since there are billions of organisms present in the vaginal discharge.

When should you suspect trich?

Trichomoniasis is not the only cause of reproductive inefficiency or failure. Whenever a high number of cows are cycling toward what should be the end of the breeding season, or are found to be open in the fall, trichomoniasis should be considered as one of several possible causes. Other possibilities, such as Campylobacteriosis (Vibrio), nutritional problems, or simply infertile bulls should also be considered. Your local veterinarian should be contacted as soon as possible when you detect such problems in your herd, since he is the most likely to be acquainted with your operation and problems in the area.


It is best to prevent entry of this disease into the herd. For some producers this is simple: buy only virgin bulls or heifers for replacements, have the bulls tested, and do not commingle your herd with any other cattle. If you participate in a grazing association or run on the forest or BLM with other operators, it is helpful to have the majority of your cows pregnant before going onto common ranges, thus decreasing the chance of transmission. If the breeding program is to be carried out on a common range, then it is essential that only clean bulls be allowed. A good way to assure clean bulls is to stock with virgin yearlings. All the bulls should be tested negative to insure that they are clean.


Vaccines for trichomoniasis have been produced by biological companies and are available for use. They are of benefit but will not prevent it from infecting a herd if an infected animal is introduced. Vaccination is of special benefit and help where the owner is not able to maintain animals in complete isolation. When using the vaccine, be sure to follow the directions carefully. Two doses are required the first year and there will be very little protective immunity until after the second vaccination is given. A single annual booster is required in each following year.


What if you already have trich in your herd? You should meet with your veterinarian to discuss the following (and other) measures for controlling the disease after it has become established in a herd or grazing association:

  1. Check all cows for pregnancy at the end of the breeding season and cull all open cows at that time.
  2. Cull all older bulls (three years and older) to slaughter.
  3. Have all remaining bulls sampled for trich at least three times before the next breeding season. The multiple testing greatly increases the opportunity to find infected bulls.
  4. Buy only virgin bulls for replacements.
  5. Make sure that all members of the grazing association adhere to these guidelines.
  6. If practical, divide your herd into smaller units for breeding. (Or consider the feasibility of using artificial insemination.)

Should you have other questions about specific details or other control measures which might be available, please contact your veterinarian, the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food or ask your local extension agent to arrange an educational program in your area dealing with the problem of trichomoniasis.