March 15, 2004
Mar/Apr 2004 -- The following scrapie question-and-answer piece is the tenth such column to appear in Sheep Industry News. It is being brought to you by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service, which oversees the National Scrapie Eradication Program. If you have a program-related question you'd like answered, please e-mail it to Sheep Industry News Editor Laura Gerhard at firstname.lastname@example.org, fax it to her attention at (303) 771-8200 or write: ASI; Attn: Laura Gerhard; 9785 S. Maroon Circle; Suite 360; Centennial, CO 80112-2692.
What do I have to do to make certain that the scrapie susceptibility genotyping I plan to do will be considered official by the APHIS for the National Scrapie Eradication Program?
You will need to make sure that:
- The blood is drawn by an accredited veterinarian;
- The sheep is officially identified with an approved scrapie program ID device;
- The sample is submitted with a properly completed VS Form 5-29 signed by you and the accredited veterinarian;
- The lab has been approved by APHIS; and
- The lab submits a copy of the test results to APHIS/Veterinary Services to be entered in the Scrapie National Generic Database.
If I am selling adult cull sheep to slaughter, do I have to tag them with an official scrapie program eartag or other official ID?
Yes. All sheep greater than 18 months of age are required to be officially identified to the flock of origin.
The owner of the flock of origin is primarily responsible for making certain this occurs.
- If the flock does not have a premises ID number, the owner should request one by calling 1-866-USDA-TAG.
- The only eartags that can be used are USDA-provided or -approved tags. These will contain the flock premises ID number or a unique serial number.
- The sheep must be identified prior to being placed in an enclosure with sheep from a different flock of origin. A dealer or market may act as the owner's agent and apply the tag, but the owner is responsible for ensuring that this is done and that the required records are kept. (An exception: Sheep transported directly to an approved slaughter facility or approved market when all the sheep in a section of a truck are from the same premises of origin and are accompanied by an owner's statement that contains information for the plant or market to identify the animals.)