The following are general biosecurity tips that can be helpful to livestock producers who suspect they have an anthrax affected animal or carcass:

• Wear long sleeves and gloves when handling carcasses or when working with or vaccinating livestock to avoid contaminating any sores or scratches on arms or hands. See your doctor if you develop an unusual-looking sore on your hands, arms or other exposed skin. Although it is very rare to contract skin anthrax, this infection requires treatment with antibiotics prescribed by a physician.

• Practice good sanitation. Wash your hands after handling livestock (even if you wear gloves.) Disinfect equipment used on the animals or carcasses. Keep pets and children away from carcasses or bones of dead animals. Move healthy animals away from a pasture where animals have died from the disease.

• Properly dispose of animal carcasses by burning to prevent exposure to other animals, such as predators or dogs.

• Vaccinate livestock if cases occur in the surrounding areas. Anthrax vaccine is a “live” vaccine, so it must not be administered with antibiotics. Vaccinated animals must be withheld from slaughter for two months.

• Restrict the movement of livestock onto or from an affected premise until animals can develop immunity through vaccination (about 10 days).

For more information regarding anthrax, visit http://www.tahc.state.tx.us or call 1-800-550-8242.

The Texas Animal Health Commission works to protect the health of all Texas livestock, including: cattle, swine, poultry, sheep, goats, equine animals, and exotic livestock.