The Animal Industry Division (AID) protects the public's health and the health of domestic animals, livestock and pets. The State Veterinarian is responsible for overall livestock and poultry disease programs and toxic substance contamination concerns as they relate to animal health. The division also works on the eradication of animal diseases, which in turn helps provide for the importation and exportation of healthy livestock. These provisions have a significant impact on human health and welfare through the protection of the food supply. Some of the diseases that threaten Michigan livestock are tuberculosis (TB), Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA), Pseudorabies, rabies, and various toxicities.
Animal Production Food Safety - The state has a cooperative educational program for veterinarians and livestock producers to help reduce the incidence of drug residues in food animals. There is also a program to improve food safety by enhancing animal health on the farm.
Animal Welfare - AID monitors health and care of animals at a variety of licensed facilities including pet shops, animal control and protection shelters, and riding stables. AID works with local law enforcement and animal welfare agencies to investigate complaints of inhumane treatment of livestock and domestic animals.
Avian Monitoring - AID works with Michigan Allied Poultry Industries, Inc. to maintain Michigan's status as Salmonella pullorum-free.
Bovine Tuberculosis - AID leads Michigan's concerted effort to eliminate TB from cattle and captive deer farms, in partnership with the Michigan Departments of Natural Resources and Community Health, USDA, MSU and the livestock industry. More than 230,000 animals were tested in 2000 and by 2003, every cattle, goat and bison herd in Michigan will be tested.
Equine Infectious Anemia - EIA is a disease caused by a virus that produces anemia, intermittent fever, and severe weight loss. Equidae (e.g., horses, ponies, mules and donkeys) are the only known animals affected by this virus. Once an animal is infected with the virus, it is infected for life, regardless of the severity of the symptoms. Animal Industry Division veterinarians conduct the testing and retesting of animals. This is to prevent the spread of the disease by quarantine and/or euthanasia or slaughter. Currently, there is no vaccine to help prevent infections with the EIA virus.
Licensing Responsibilities - AID licenses and regulates a variety of animal industries including: livestock dealers, truckers, sales and auction markets, renderers (carcass dealers), riding stables, pet shops, animal control/ protection shelters and commercial fish hatcheries and aquaculture facilities.
Reportable Diseases - AID investigates all reportable diseases cases to stop the spread of disease to humans and other animals.
Pseudorabies Eradication - Pseudorabies is a disease that has had significant economic impact on Michigan's pork industry. There is a unique partnership between state and industry that has allowed Michigan to achieve initial pseudorabies-free status. Swine infected with Pseudorabies do not grow to market weight as fast and often have reproductive problems or die, which translates into a higher price for consumers at the meat counter.
Scrapie Risk Reduction - In partnership with MSU and the sheep industry, AID introduced a program that seeks to track the genetic code for the fatal scrapie disease to prevent its spread from flock to flock.
Dr. James Averill - State Veterinarian and Director, Animal Industry Division