Zoonoses

Zoonoses are diseases that are transmitted from an animal to a human being.

There are over 200 disease that are known and have been around for many centuries. The more common diseases include anthrax, rabies, brucellosis, and leptospirosis.

People who have close contact with large numbers of animals such as farmers, abattoir workers, shearers, abattoir workers and veterinarians are at a higher risk of contracting a zoonotic disease.

Fortunately contact with zoonotic disease agents is preventable by taking a number of precautions including:

  • practising good personal hygiene;
  • providing prompt and effective first aid treatment to cuts and scratches;
  • using personal protective equipment eg overalls, gloves, boots, goggles, aprons;
  • cleaning and disinfecting work spaces and equipment;
  • vaccinating pets and livestock;
  • worming animals;
  • controlling rodents;
  • isolating and treating sick animals

It is important to realise that zoonoses may be contracted from both ill and apparently healthy animals.

Read more on Zoonoses