News Article

Tackling Sheep Lameness - The five-point plan

Tuesday, 18 August 2015 - 9:53am

Footrot and scald are the leading causes of sheep lameness in the UK, resulting in serious loss of production and financial returns to farmers, as well as being an animal welfare concern.

The five-point plan was developed by combining academic research findings with best farming practice, to create a set of practical and effective measures for farmers.

Farm Animal Welfare Committee (FAWC) target

The five-point plan is the agreed national strategy for achieving the FAWC target of reducing sheep lameness to less than 5% of the national flock by 2016 and less than 2% by 2021.

In addition, cross-compliance regulations require farmers to maintain levels at less than 5%. The five-point plan can help tackle the prevention, control and treatment of lameness and contribute to these national goals.

The five-point plan

This management plan gives farmers a clear framework to help control lameness in their flocks. It sets out to:

• Increase the sheeps’ natural resilience to the diseases that cause lameness

• Reduce disease challenge and spread on farm

• Improve flock immunity via vaccination

These measures together can ‘tip the balance’ towards having less lameness and a higher flock health status.

This method has been successfully adopted by many UK farmers. They have demonstrated that lameness reduction is achievable within a relatively short time.

However, it does require long-term commitment to sustain on-going success.

This XLVets campaign ties in with the other industry campaigns to reduce lameness in sheep, to read more please click the link The five-point plan or alternatively call our farm team to discuss 01363 772860.