In Arkansas when an animal is brought to the fair you can rest assured it has been to the vet and had its health records brought up to date, it has had all the bloodwork done and it will be disease-free by every measurable standard.
“There is always the risk of cross-contamination, and we would discourage sharing equipment,” Phil Sims, Pope County Extension Agent, said.
The Livestock and Poultry Commission keeps a tight rein on animal health in the state of Arkansas. Sims explained each local fair is then responsible for checking the health records on each animal coming into the fair, and a visual on-site inspection is conducted. Any kind of obviously sick animal would not even be unloaded, Sims added.
Even with the best efforts at containing and preventing any disease being spread at the fair, it is never a bad idea to take precautionary steps and incorporate cleanliness and sanitation into your show routine. At fairs and livestock shows, animals from different species, breeds, age and sex are co-mingled. Not to mention, the animals come from different locations and are managed very differently. This co-mingling of animals creates an atmosphere that could lead to transmission of diseases. In addition, travel, close confinement in unfamiliar settings and other stressors can lead to increased disease susceptibility. Stress can also cause animals that could be carriers of disease to shed these organisms in increased quantities. Also, fairs and livestock shows allow people from a cross-section of the population to have close contact with animals. All of these factors put exhibitioner’s animals at risk of becoming exposed to a disease.

16 Biosecurity Suggestions You Can Use
1.    Work with your veterinarian to establish a herd health program. Ensure that all of your animals are well vaccinated before any animal is taken to a show or fair.
2.    Do not bring any visibly sick animals to a show or fair.
3.    Make sure all veterinary health inspections and certificates of veterinary inspection are current for all animals that will be taken to a show or fair.
4.    Disinfect all equipment such as buckets, shovels, wheelbarrows, manure baskets, lead ropes, blankets, snares, clippers, scissors, brushes, show box, etc. before entering the fairgrounds. A recommended disinfectant is Roccal D Plus. This is available from your veterinarian or vet supply store.
5.    Don’t share equipment with other exhibitors unless it has been cleaned and disinfected before and after use.
6.    Minimize stress prior to the fair by providing a clean, dry and comfortable environment, plenty of water and the same feeds that will be taken to the show or fair.
7.    Keep unused equipment and feed bagged or covered to reduce the risk of contamination.
8.    Vehicles and trailers used to transport animals should be well cleaned and disinfected, inside and out. Do not transport other exhibitors’ animals in the same trailer. Keep traffic between the animal areas of the fairgrounds and the home to a minimum.
9.    During the fair, keep animals as comfortable as possible to help reduce stress. Provide adequate bedding and plenty of air movement. Also, make sure clean water is always available and that your animals get the same feed as they do at home.
10.    Minimize nose-to-nose contact with animals from other farms. Avoid contact with manure from other animals.
11.    Keep wheelbarrow tires, pitchforks and feeding equipment clean and free of manure.
12.    Avoid sharing grooming equipment as well as feed and water equipment. If you loan equipment to someone, clean and disinfect it when it is returned.
13.    For milking animals, it is best to bring a portable milking machine from your farm. Avoid sharing milking units.
14.    Practice good personal hygiene – wash hands after touching animals and before eating.
15.    Clean and disinfect all items at the end of the fair before taking them home.
16.    Properly dispose of unused bedding, hay and feed after the fair. Do not bring it home.
Good biosecurity does not end once the fair is finished. It is important to keep fair animals isolated from other animals and pets for at least 30 days. If possible, you should quarantine the animals in a facility that is completely separate from your other animals to avoid contact or airborne transmission of a possible disease. Check these animals daily for any signs of illness. While your animals are in quarantine, minimize stress by making sure they are comfortable, well fed and watered.


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