The ministry has launched a vaccination campaign against foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) with aim of vaccinating all cows and sheep in all regions of the kingdom, within the plans of the Deputy-Ministry of Animal Resources to control and prevent epidemic zoonoses.
Dr. Ibrahim Ahmed Qasim, the Director-General of Animal Resources Services, has announced that the campaign will take place in all regions of the Kingdom starting from February 13, 2019, till April 11, 2019, calling on all cattle breeders to visit the nearest branch of the ministry or veterinary unit for vaccination.
Dr. Qasim said has pointed out that the FMD is a highly contagious viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals that affects sheep, goats, deer, and other wild or domestic ruminants. The disease spreads rapidly across the world (including Saudi Arabia, where which the disease is endemic). Adding that it is considered a transboundary animal disease, as the virus is spread by wind currents so that the disease spreads across geographical borders which would cause great economic losses to livestock breeders; therefore, the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) has adopted a global FMD control strategy.
Dr. Qasim has emphasized the importance of vaccination campaigns carried out by the ministry to improve livestock production, in order to avoid the economic losses that may result from infection, as that cattle breeders have about 500 thousand head of cows.