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Farm Animal Health and Safety

September 23, 2021
photo of horses grazing in grass field
Photo by Helena Lopes on

Today for National Farm Health and Safety week, we are going to be talking about the safety and health of your farm animals! Animals’ lives are just as important as their owner’s lives, so let’s talk about how to ensure your animals are as healthy and as safe as you!

Animal health risks can be divided into two categories: injuries and diseases. Injuries can be self-inflicted, environmental, or other animal inflicted.

Self-Inflicted Harm

Self-inflicted harm is when an animal accidentally or purposely harms itself. This can be caused by stress and irritation. Stress can cause an animal to act out in many ways. One way is through self-inflicted pain. Examples can range from over itching and causing wounds or pacing and injuries resulting from the overuse or extension of muscles. These can both be equally bad because the wound could get infected if not treated quickly enough, and the muscle could get worse or more injured if also not noticed or treated quickly enough.

Environmental Injuries

Environmental injuries are any accidents that happen due to environmental factors. This could include thunderstorms harming livestock in uncovered areas or fencing injuring an animal. Environmental injuries can be avoided through precautions such as checking on your fencing every few months or watching for weather alerts and making sure your livestock is safe during those alerts. 

Animal Inflicted Injuries 

Animal-inflicted injuries can be one of two things: other livestock biting your animal or insects/parasites harming your animal. This can be as little a spider bite or as big as a parasitic infection. Parasites can be transmitted in a couple of different ways: contaminated food, water, blood, soil, and waste. Some can also be passed through sexual contact, but with livestock, that is typically not the case. Some ways to prevent the spread or contraction of parasites, in general, are by ensuring your water is changed regularly, regularly checking for bites and wounds on your animals to make sure they are cleaned and uninfected, and periodical deworming and precautionary care.


Stemming from parasitic infection, the next animal health risk is a disease. Since we’ve already covered parasites, I won’t speak on those again. One way to prevent the spread of disease includes keeping your animals safe and enclosed from other animals using gates to not only keep your animals in but keeping other animals out. Another way to keep animals out of your animals’ habitat is by using raised feeders and storage to keep pests away from food and therefore prevent the opportunity for diseases and keep it at a minimum. Lastly, you must properly dispose of ruined bedding and uneaten food and clean animal enclosures frequently. Also staying up to date on vaccines, having routine veterinary exams, and watching for signs of illness are three other ways to make sure your animals are safe and healthy. Doing these couple of steps every month or so will help to prevent your farm animal from getting unwanted parasites and diseases. 


About the Author
Liv grew up in Anderson, SC, and attended Coastal Carolina University where she majored in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations. She became the Marketing Communications Specialist for National Land Realty in July of 2021. In her free time, Liv can be found spending time with family and friends, hiking with her dog, Brisket, or caring for one of her many house plants.