Can you Google your pet?


Save This Life has patented a way to use Google to help you find your lost pet!
Each Save This Life microchip number is searchable in Google.
When someone finds a pet and Googles’s the microchip number, they can privately contact the pet owner through text and email.
The pet owner receives a GPS map of where the person who found their pet is located!

Google your pet 1

If your pet already has a microchip and you want to get a lifetime registration with Save This Life, it is a one time fee of $20.

Watch this informational video below to see how the Save This Life process works, or go to for more information!

PET THEFT…What you should know to keep yor pet safe.


, , , ,

HELP! My dog has been stolen…
We hope you never have to say that.

sad dog

You may or may not be aware that there has been some reports of dog-nappings (& other attempts) in Faribault and the surrounding area for a couple of weeks now.  The ugly trade of pet theft is a serious problem. It is an organized, high dollar business that lurks in shadows and goes unnoticed until it strikes your community, your home, your pet. Protecting your dog takes due diligence.

Why are pets stolen? Besides being sold to research labs (which isn’t as common anymore) or pet stores, they are used in bait and for dog fighting rings, in puppy mills to breeders, for fur, as breeding partners for dogs, and by sadistic individuals.

sad dog2Pet theft prevention tips:
1. Pets should WEAR TAGS at all times. Rabies and/or license/registration tags are required by law in most towns.
2. TATTOO and/or MICROCHIP all pets for positive identification (it’s best to do both). Tattoo your purebred pet’s registration number (be sure to include registry initials: AKC, UKC, CFA, etc.) or a specific number you register with your veterinarian inside the thigh or on the belly (ears can be torn due to injury, or cut off).
3. REGISTER all tattoos or microchips with the appropriate registry. An unregistered tattoo or microchip is useless. The person who tattoos your pet or injects the microchip should give you information on how to register it.
4. CONFINE your pets. The safest place for them when you’re not home is INDOORS. This includes cats, too!
5. PADLOCK GATES. If you must leave your dog outside in a fenced yard, at least make it difficult for others to get to him. The fence needs to be at least 6 feet high and padlocked.
6. Fit an alarm/bell to your gate so that you can hear visitors/trespassers enter your property.
7. Dogs that are kept tied in unfenced yards should be located OUT OF VIEW of passersby.
8. NEVER let your dog off his chain or leash (if you live in town) – even for a minute – if you won’t be right there to watch him the whole time! In most places it’s illegal (in town), and it’s an open invitation for trouble!
9. Train your dog not to go out of your sight on walks.
10. Don’t leave your dog tied in public places while you go in stores to shop!
11. If you have a doggy door. Lock it when you are not home! Let the dog do its business before you leave, let him in, lock door.
12. SPAY or NEUTER all pets. This makes them less inclined to wander, and eliminates any resale value for breeding purposes.
13. If a stranger approaches you about buying or breeding to your pet, tell him the pet has been spayed or neutered, even if it hasn’t. WRITE DOWN the person’s name, address, and license plate number, and keep a close eye on your pet afterwards!
14. DO NOT put your pet’s name on his ID tag or display it on his dog house. A pet is much more likely to go to (and with) a stranger who calls him by name.
15. DO NOT talk to strangers about the value, bloodlines, training or special abilities of your pet.
16. On the Road: Never leave your dog in an unattended car, even if it’s locked – Besides the obvious health risks this poses to the dog, it’s also an invitation for thieves. You wouldn’t leave your purse or wallet laying in plain view in your car.
17. Take pictures with your dog. (You and other family members) This makes it easier to prove that dog is yours.
18. DON’T BUY STOLEN PETS. Don’t buy dogs from the internet, flea markets, or roadside vans There is simply no way to verify where an animal purchased from any of these outlets came from. Web sites and online classifieds are easily falsified, and with roadside or flea market purchases not only do you not know the pet’s origins but you will never be able to find or identify the seller in case of a problem. Even newspaper ads may be suspect. Adult dogs offered for sale at reduced prices, for a “relocation” fee, or accompanied by requests for last minute shipping fees are red flags. Dog owners who truly love their animals and are unable to keep them will opt to find a loving home without compensation for re-homing the animal. Seek out rescue groups or reputable breeders. A few great rescues in our area are:, , .

Visit the home of the breeder, meet the puppy’s mother, and see the litter of puppies. Developing a good relationship with the breeder will bring you peace of mind when purchasing. Contacting breed rescue groups can also be a safe alternative if you are looking for an adult dog. But either way ALWAYS Demand proper papers on your purebred puppy. Ask for the AKC Litter Registration Number and contact AKC customer service at 919-233-9767 to verify registration authenticity of your purebred puppy.

What to do in an emergency if your pet is stolen?

If you believe your pet has been stolen please call the local police department:

Faribault Police: Dispatch (non-emergency): 507-334-4305

Lonsdale Police: Dispatch (non-emergency) : 507-334-4391, Office: 507-744-2300

Montgomery: Dispatch (non-emergency) : 507-364-7700, Office: 507-364-8000, 507-364-8070

Morristown Police: 507-685-4190

Northfield Police: 507-645-4475

Owatonna Police: Dispatch (non-emergency) : 507-451-8232, Office: 507-444-3800

Rice County Sheriff: 507-332-6010

LeSueur County Sheriff: 507-357-4440

Steele County Sheriff: 507-444-3800


Then call your local impound  to see if your pet has been brought there and to ask them to let you know if they show up there.

Faribault: Muddy Paws Resort 507-332-8110

Northfield: Country Side Vet Clinic 507-645-4522

Owatonna Impound: Police Dept. 507-444-3800

We also recommend calling the local veterinarian offices to ask if there was any found reports and to leave word that you are missing your dog.

Remember social media is also a great way to get the word out about your missing dog. Post pics on local pages. (garage sale pages, local happening pages, etc.)

Please let us know via Facebook that you are missing your dog and we will post it on our page.

(507) 334-2068

*Excerpts taken from Fido Friendly magazine

Merial provides educational tools for dairy farms.


This bilingual program provides step-by-step how-to guides that are followed by comprehensive quizzes. It’s an expanding educational tool designed to help ensure your employees are absorbing the knowledge they need to help produce the kind of quality you expect.

Sign your dairy up today. You’ll get customized reports on individual employee performance. It’s simple, free and a great way to keep employees in the know, on the line.

Registered users of Best In Class Dairies and existing Merial customers can now submit their rebates electronically or by mail/fax




The Minnesota Board of Animal Health today announced its directive to cancel all bird exhibitions at county fairs, the State Fair, and other gatherings of birds. The Board’s directive is effective through the end of 2015 and also prohibits birds from being included in swap meets, exotic sales, and petting zoos.

Minnesota’s poultry industry has experienced the largest impact as a result of HPAI. Steve Olson, executive director of the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association and Chicken and Egg Association of Minnesota said, “We know the decision to halt poultry exhibitions at our county fairs and the Minnesota State Fair was not an easy one to make. This certainly affects the 4-H kids who plan for their projects all year long, and also means fewer opportunities for fairgoers across the state to learn about raising poultry. However, this is the right decision because what’s most important at this point is protecting the health and well-being of the birds that are being raised by 4-H’ers, FFA members, and Minnesota’s poultry farmers.”

Visit for the most up-to-date information on Minnesota’s response to HPAI.
For information on livestock exhibition requirements in Minnesota, visit

Update on Avian Influenza

EOC News Release #4


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                      CONTACT:

April 27, 2015                                                             Bruce Gordon 651-201-7171

Doug Neville 651-201-7562




ST PAUL — The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Homeland Security Emergency Management  Division (HSEM) activated the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) to coordinate the state’s ongoing response to avian influenza. HSEM will coordinate resource needs with several state agencies including the Minnesota Board of Animal Health and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.


Additional HPAI cases in Minnesota

The USDA today confirmed the presence of H5N2 HPAI in four additional flocks. The following Minnesota counties were affected:

  • Chippewa – 1st detection in county (68,000 turkeys)
  • Kandiyohi – 11th*, 18th and 19th detections (42,900 turkeys and 67,000 turkeys)
  • Redwood – 4th detection (24,300 turkeys). The 3rd flock in Redwood County (11,100 turkeys) was identified as a dangerous contact and will be euthanized as a preventative measure.

*A delay in confirmatory testing resulted in late announcement of the 11th detection in Kandiyohi County.

Animal health officials are currently investigating possible additional cases of HPAI in Minnesota flocks. As flocks are confirmed by NVSL, the Board will provide information on its website at

Current Situation

Total number of farms – 55

Total number of counties – 18

Farms by County/Number of Flocks

Chippewa: 1

Clay: 1

Cottonwood: 2
Kandiyohi: 19
Lac Qui Parle: 1
Le Sueur: 1

Lyon: 1
Meeker: 6
Nobles: 1
Otter Tail: 2
Pipestone: 1
Pope: 1
Redwood: 4
Roseau: 1
Stearns: 9
Swift: 2
Wadena: 1

Watonwan: 1

Total number of birds affected in Minnesota – 3,114,232

All affected farms remain under quarantine.

Visit the USDA’s website for information on all HPAI findings in the United States.



Current Incident Response Personnel

  • Minnesota Board of Animal Health and Department of Agriculture 85
  • S. Department of Agriculture 139
  • Total number of incident responders 224


To date, animal health officials have completed the following response zone activities:

  • Visited with individuals on over 11,000 premises to provide education and information on avian influenza
  • Conducted surveillance testing on 583 backyard flocks falling within the control areas of infected flocks
  • 49 flocks have either been depopulated or are in the process.


Water Delivery

  • Large amounts of water are needed in foaming systems being used as part of euthanasia efforts, which are in place to control further spread of avian influenza virus.
  • The Minnesota National Guard is delivering water for use in the disease containment effort. Forty-one soldiers and 15 water trucks are available to supply water. The Guard provided 16 thousand gallons of water in Kandiyohi County today. The Guard began its mission on Monday and will continue to provide support until civilian contractors become available. The soldiers and equipment are from the Willmar-based 682nd Engineer Battalion and the Brooklyn Park-based A Company, 134th Brigade Support Battalion.
  • The Minnesota Department of Transportation supported foaming operations on Sunday. Three MnDOT tanker trucks, two 6,500 gallon trucks and one 4,500 gallon truck, moved water from Evansville to Paynesville. The trucks were from MnDOT facilities in Baxter, St. Cloud and the Twin Cities.

No Public Health Risk

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) reports that no human infections with this strain of the virus (H5N2) have been detected in Minnesota or elsewhere in the U.S. However, in some cases certain HPAI H5 viruses can infect people and it is important to prevent infections.

In general, avian influenza viruses are spread to people through direct contact with infected birds or their environments, including contaminated bedding, feed or water. Person-to-person spread of avian influenza viruses is rare and limited.

This is not a public health risk or a food safety risk. The potential risk is for those who have direct contact with infected birds.


Poultry Workers

MDH is monitoring the health of workers, who have had contact with infected poultry, and providing guidance on infection control, the use of personal protective equipment, and providing support for any other health-related aspects of response.

  • People who had close, unprotected contact with infected flocks are recommended to receive an antiviral drug called Tamiflu. MDH does not issue the drug directly. Rather, MDH facilitates getting the prescription for the workers by working with the company occupational health departments or the health care providers for those individuals.
  • Workers are then contacted daily for 10 days and monitored for development of respiratory symptoms.
  • As of today, MDH has completed follow-up contacts for 48 flocks.
  • MDH is currently monitoring 86 poultry personnel for potential symptoms of infection, such as development of an eye infection or respiratory symptoms.
  • The MDH 10-day monitoring period has been completed for 74 people associated with 17 flocks; no infections with this virus were detected.

No Positives Found in Wild Birds in Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has collected more than 2,300 samples from wild waterfowl. Of those samples, nearly 1,000 test results have been received and none have tested positive for H5N2. The DNR’s goal is to collect and test 3,000 samples from affected areas.

Twenty-one wild bird carcasses of various species have been sampled. Of the eight test results received so far, none have tested positive for H5N2. The DNR is also testing hunter-harvested wild turkeys from Swift, Stearns, Pope, Meeker and Kandiyohi counties. Eighteen hunter-killed turkeys have been tested, but no results have been received yet. The goal is to collect 300 samples from hunter-killed turkeys by the end of the six-week wild turkey hunting season.

landing picture

Permit Requirements for Control Areas

All avian influenza (AI) permit requests and supporting documents should be submitted to

Permits for movement in or out of AI control areas

A permit is required for each movement of birds, eggs or semen into or out of AI control zones. Permits are for movement from the origin premises – therefore, requests for permits should come from the origin premises. All requests should be submitted 24 – 48 hours prior to the desired movement.

Permit requirements for shipment of birds, semen or eggs from premises in AI Control Areas

  1. Testing. Two negative PCR tests (5 bird pooled samples for each barn) are required. Samples for the second test must be collected the day prior to the date of each shipment.  Test results must be verified before a permit is issued.
  2. Mortality logs. A mortality log of the previous 14 days for each barn on the site must be submitted the day prior to the date of each shipment.
  3. Biosecurity audits. A biosecurity audit must be submitted one time for each premises. Daily audits are no longer required.

Response Zones

When a Minnesota premises is identified with highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI), on-the-ground response efforts begin immediately. Animal health officials carry out a number of activities according to protocols established by the U. S. Department of Agriculture in order to manage the disease and reduce any potential risk of its spread. These activities take place not only on the affected premises, but also in two areas around the affected premises called the control area and surveillance zone.

Affected Site

Premises infected with HPAI are placed under quarantine, prohibiting the movement of poultry and poultry products on or off of the affected site. The USDA works with infected flock owners to develop a flock plan which includes appraisal and indemnity agreements for depopulation of poultry that remain on the premises. After depopulation of the flock, all turkey carcasses on the affected farms are composted inside of the barns. This process takes approximately one month to complete.

Control Area

The control area is a 10 km zone is established around infected flocks. Within this zone, officials work to identify all premises with commercial and backyard poultry. Backyard flocks are placed under quarantine and cannot move poultry or poultry products on or off of their premises. These flocks must complete two rounds of surveillance testing, all of which must be negative before quarantines can be lifted.

Commercial flocks inside of the control area undergo surveillance in accordance with U. S. Department of Agriculture protocols. All commercial poultry producers in the control area also comply with stringent biosecurity and permitting protocols in order to move poultry or poultry products off of their farms.

Surveillance Zone

The surveillance zone is a 10 km zone surrounding the control area. Animal health officials identify all premises within this zone that have commercial and backyard poultry to provide them with information on HPAI and advise them on biosecurity and close monitoring of their flocks.

Commercial poultry operations that fall within this area are currently testing their flocks for avian influenza every seven days in accordance with protocols established by the U. S. Department of Agriculture.

Affected Counties

April 27, 2015


Total # of Birds on Premises

(prior to death/euthanasia)

Type of Poultry

Pope 1 44,000 Commercial Turkey
Lac Qui Parle 1 66,000 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 1 39,000 Commercial Turkey
Nobles 21,000 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 2 71,000 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 3 76,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 1 26,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 2 30,000 Commercial Turkey
Meeker 1 310,000 Commercial Turkey
Cottonwood 1 48,000 Commercial Turkey
Lyon 1 66,000 Commercial Turkey
Watonwan 1 30,000 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 4 45,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 3 38,000 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 5 76,000 Commercial Turkey
Le Sueur 1 21,500 Commercial Turkey
Swift 1 160,000 Commercial Turkey
Swift 2 154,000 Commercial Turkey
Redwood 1 56,000 Commercial Turkey
Meeker 2 25,000 Commercial Turkey
Meeker 3 20,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 4 30,000 Commercial Turkey
Otter Tail 1 21,000 Commercial Turkey
Roseau 1 26,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 5 152,000 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 6 67,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 6 23,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 7* 9,000 Commercial Turkey
Wadena 1 301,000 Commercial Turkey
Cottonwood 2 30,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 8 61,000 Commercial Turkey
Otter Tail 2 34,500 Commercial Turkey
Redwood 2 35,500 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 9 75,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 12** 19,100 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 13 34,500 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 14 61,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 15 pending Commercial Turkey
Stearns 7 28,600 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 8 72,500 Commercial Turkey
Stearns 9 pending Commercial Turkey
Meeker 4 58,900 Commercial Turkey
Meeker 5 pending Commercial Turkey
Meeker 6 10,700 Commercial Turkey
Pipestone 1 150 Mixed Backyard
Kandiyohi 10 62,600 Commercial Turkey
Clay 1 265,382 Commercial Chicken
Kandiyohi 16 pending Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 17 pending Commercial Turkey
Chippewa 68,000 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 11 pending Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 18 42,900 Commercial Turkey
Kandiyohi 19 67,000 Commercial Turkey
Redwood 3* 11,100 Commercial Turkey
Redwood 4 24,300 Commercial Turkey

* Kandiyohi 7 was euthanized as a precaution because of its exposure to Kandiyohi 6.

* Redwood 3 was euthanized as a precaution because of its exposure to Redwood 4.

  • Total number of birds affected in Minnesota: 3,114,232 (not including pending flocks)
  • Total number of farms affected: 55
  • Total number of counties: 18

Animal Health officials are currently investigating possible additional cases of HPAI in Minnesota flocks. As flocks are confirmed by NVSL, they will be announced accordingly.


Protecting your birds from disease has always been important. However, taking biosecurity to the next level is now more crucial than ever. As we work together to eliminate HPAI and add strength to Minnesota’s poultry industry, there are small steps you can take that will have a big impact.

  1. Eliminate opportunities for your birds to interact with wild birds. We know that wild waterfowl are carriers of disease, including HPAI. The best way to avoid diseases that wildlife carry is to keep domestic animals separated from the wild.
  2. If you have birds at home, do not visit another farm, home or facility that also has birds. If you must visit another premises, be sure to shower and put on clean clothes and shoes beforehand.
  3. Remember that vehicles can be vehicles for disease transmission. Before you drive down the road, consider where you are going. Will you be heading to the fair, another farm or a live bird market? If the answer is yes, be sure your vehicle is clean and free of dirt, manure and other organic material.
  4. Early detection can help prevent the spread of disease. Knowing the signs to look for and monitoring the health of your birds on a regular basis is very important. Some signs to look for include nasal discharge, unusually quiet birds, decreased food and water consumption, drop in egg production, and increased/unusual death loss in your flock.
  5. Report sick and dead birds to state health officials immediately. If your birds appear sick or you have experienced increased mortality, fill out our online report form or immediately call 320-214-6700 Ext. 3804.

Testing and Reporting


Samples for official AI testing must be be collected by individuals trained and certified as authorized poultry testing agents. Once samples are collected, there are two diagnostic laboratories in Minnesota that are approved for testing samples for influenza. For detailed information on sample submission and testing for AI, contact:

Minnesota Poultry Testing Laboratory

Phone: (320) 231-5170

University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

Phone: (800) 605-8787


As we work to contain and get rid of HPAI in Minnesota, it is extremely important that bird owners and poultry producers report sick or dead birds. Reports can be made in the following ways:

  • Call the reporting hotline at (320) 214-6700, ext. 3804
  • Fill out our online form
  • Contact your veterinarian or the Board of Animal Health

If you notice any of the following in your flock, a report should be made immediately:

  • Unusual or high death loss
  • Influenza-like signs such as nasal secretions, puffy eyes, ruffled feathers or a drop in egg production
  • Loss of appetite with decreased food and water consumption
  • Paralysis and other nervous signs
  • Lack of vocalization

Collaborative Effort

Even before HPAI was identified in Minnesota, we had a plan for how we would control and eliminate the disease if it ever came to our state. We are now putting this plan into action, but we are not doing it alone. Read about how our state and federal agencies are working alongside poultry producers to eliminate HPAI in Minnesota.

  • Minnesota Board of Animal Health – We are the lead response agency for on-the-ground operations and communications. Our team works closely with and under advisement of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on defining disease control zones, testing and quarantine procedures and public release of information.
  • USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) – USDA-APHIS are our federal partners in responding to HPAI.
  • Minnesota Department of Health – Minnesota Department of Health’s (MDH) primary role is to coordinate with animal health agencies, local public health, and industry to identify, protect, and monitor the health of poultry workers and others in direct contact with infected birds. MDH also serves as a source of information for the public on any human health risks.
  • Minnesota Department of Agriculture -The Minnesota Department of Agriculture provides emergency response support to the Minnesota Board of Animal Health during animal disease outbreaks.Through the establishment of an Incident Command System (ICS), the agencies are able to share facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures, and communications to effectively and efficiently respond to a domestic incident under urgent conditions.
  • Minnesota Department of Natural Resources – The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) works in concert with other state and federal agencies to coordinate wildlife surveillance educate stakeholders on disease issues and formulate and implement wildlife disease response plans.
  • University of Minnesota – The University of Minnesota provides university research to those in the poultry industry. They provide education materials and programs for the commercial poultry industry, niche producers, extension educators, youth, and consumers.
  • Poultry Industry – The Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) and the Chicken and Egg Association of Minnesota (CEAM) work closely with state and national agencies to coordinate the communication of the latest information to Minnesota’s poultry industry through a variety of methods. These organizations take the lead in providing education and outreach to their members on how farmers can keep their flocks safe from disease threats, while also working closely with University of Minnesota Extension to provide information to small flock and backyard flock owners. MTGA and CEAM communicate with other state poultry associations as needed, and serve as a resource for the media.

Disease Information

Influenza is a virus that can infect humans and many animal species, including poultry and other birds. Influenza is not uncommon and it has been around for centuries. Influenza in poultry is not a food safety issue.

Influenza in poultry falls into two groups: low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI), or highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). Similar to influenza symptoms in people, birds infected with LPAI usually experience only mild signs if any, including respiratory signs such as conjunctivitis and nasal discharge, ruffled feathers or a drop in egg production. Unlike LPAI, the first indication of HPAI in poultry is sudden death, often without signs of illness. In the last 40 years, there have been introductions of LPAI in Minnesota poultry all of which have been successfully eliminated.

The Board continues to work together with Minnesota’s poultry industry and other state and federal agencies to prepare for and respond to introductions of influenza in poultry. The state’s voluntary cooperative control plan includes education, monitoring, reporting, and response. Testing for influenza in poultry is conducted at the Minnesota Poultry Testing Laboratory in Willmar. Commercial and non-commercial poultry flocks are routinely monitored for influenza.

Avian Influenza- Info for hunters

 Wild Turkey Brood           Minnesota Department of Natural Resources logo

What do you do if you find dead birds?

DNR wildlife staff have been notified to be extra vigilant for sick or dead raptors (hawks, eagles, owls) and wild turkeys. They have received instructions on carcass handling if any are identified.

If you see a dead wild turkey or raptor or it appears sick (ruffled feathers, swollen wattles, discoloration of the feet and impaired balance), do not touch or move it to minimize any potential risk of unintentionally spreading the virus if the animal is infected.

Mark the location by GPS if possible and contact DNR with the coordinates. Contacts are:

Protocols are in place to sample these birds if it’s determined that HPAI may be the cause of mortality.

At this time, we are only looking for raptors and wild turkeys. We are not taking samples on other species of birds unless five or more are found dead in the same location.

Information for hunters

Hunters should take extra precautions when handling harvested waterfowl because they are reservoirs for low pathogenic AI virus, too. Even though waterfowl do not get sick, the virus affects other birds very differently.

Wild turkeys are presumed to be susceptible to the virus so turkey hunters should follow the same precautions.

In the field

  • Do not harvest or handle wild birds that are obviously sick or found dead.
  • Dress your game birds in the field whenever possible.
  • Use dedicated tools for cleaning game, whether in the field or at home. Do not use those tools around your poultry or pet birds.
  • Always wear rubber gloves when cleaning game.
  • Double bag the offal and feathers. Tie the inner bag, and be sure to take off your rubber gloves and leave them in the outer bag before tying it closed. Place the bag in a trash can that poultry and pet birds cannot access. This trash can should also be secure against access by children, pets or other animals.
  • Wash hands with soap and water immediately after handling game. If soap and water are not available, use alcohol wipes.
  • Wash all tools and work surfaces with soap and water. Then, disinfect them. Do not eat, drink or smoke while cleaning game.

At home

  • If you clean a bird at home, keep a separate pair of shoes to wear only in your game cleaning area. If this is not possible, wear rubber footwear and clean/disinfect your shoes before entering or leaving the area.
  • Wash all tools and work surfaces with soap and water. Then, disinfect them.
  • Avoid cross-contamination. Keep uncooked game in a separate container, away from cooked or ready-to-eat foods.
  • Cook game meat thoroughly. Poultry should reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F to kill disease organisms and parasites.

The USDA has published an information sheet specifically geared to hunters; this information is particularly important if you have backyard poultry or pet birds at home as they are susceptible to avian influenza. Basic safety precautions can keep the disease from spreading and reduce the risk of exposing wildlife, your poultry or pet birds to avian influenza.

More HPAI information

Board of Animal Health

Department of Health

U.S. Department of Agriculture

Canine Influenza: Pet Owners’ Guide

Canine Influenza: Pet Owners’ Guide

Canine influenza (CI, or dog flu) in the U.S. is caused by the canine influenza virus (CIV), an influenza A virus. It  is highly contagious and easily spread from infected dogs to other dogs through direct contact, nasal secretions (through coughing and sneezing), contaminated objects (kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars and leashes), and by people moving between infected and uninfected dogs. Dogs of any breed, age, sex or health status are at risk of infection when exposed to the virus.

Unlike seasonal flu in people, canine influenza can occur year round. So far, there is no evidence that canine influenza infects people. However, it does appear that at least some strains of the disease can infect cats.

Canine influenza symptoms and diagnosis

Greyhound resting on a blanket CIV infection resembles canine infectious tracheobronchitis (“kennel cough”). The illness may be mild or severe, and infected dogs develop a persistent cough and may develop a thick nasal discharge and fever. Other signs can include lethargy, eye discharge, reduced appetite, and low-grade fever. Most dogs recover within 2-3 weeks. However, secondary bacterial infections can develop, and may cause more severe illness and pneumonia. Anyone with concerns about their pet’s health, or whose pet is showing signs of canine influenza, should contact their veterinarian.

CIV can be diagnosed early in the illness (less than 4 days) by testing a nasal or throat swab. The most accurate test for CIV infection is a blood test that requires a sample taken during the first week of illness, followed by a second sample 10-14 days later.

Transmission and prevention of canine influenza

Dogs are most contagious during the two- to four-day incubation period for the virus, when they are infected and shedding the virus in their nasal secretions but are not showing signs of illness. Almost all dogs exposed to CIV will become infected, and the majority (80%) of infected dogs develop flu-like illness. The mortality (death) rate is low (less than 10%).

The spread of CIV can be reduced by isolating ill dogs as well as those who are known to have been exposed to an infected dog and those showing signs of respiratory illness. Good hygiene and sanitation, including hand washing and thorough cleaning of shared items and kennels, also reduce the spread of CIV. Influenza viruses do not usually survive in the environment beyond 48 hours and are inactivated or killed by commonly used disinfectants.

There are vaccines against the H3N8 strain of canine influenza, which was first discovered in 2004 and until 2015 was the only strain of canine influenza found in the United States. However, a 2015 outbreak of canine influenza in Chicago was traced to the H3N2 strain – the  first reporting of this strain outside of Asia – and it is not known whether the H3N8 vaccine provides any protection against this strain. Used against H3N8, the vaccines may not completely prevent infection, but appear to reduce the severity and duration of the illness, as well as the length of time when an infected dog may shed the virus in its respiratory secretions and the amount of virus shed – making them less contagious to other dogs.

The CIV vaccination is a “lifestyle” vaccination, recommended for dogs at risk of exposure due to their increased exposure to other dogs – such as boarding, attending social events with dogs present, and visiting dog parks.


USDA Confirms Highly Pathogenic H5N2 Avian Influenza


USDA Confirms Highly Pathogenic H5N2 Avian Influenza

These headlines have been a bit of concern for some of our clients with and without poultry flocks, so we thought we would share a bit more information…

WASHINGTON, April 7, 2015 — The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the presence of highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza (HPAI) in a second commercial turkey flock in Kandiyohi County, Minnesota. This is the eighth confirmation in a commercial flock in Minnesota. No human infections with the virus have been detected at this time.

What Is Avian Influenza?
Avian influenza (AI) viruses can infect chickens, turkeys, pheasants, quail, ducks, geese and guinea fowl, as well as a wide variety of other birds. Migratory waterfowl have proved to be a natural reservoir for the less infectious strains of the disease known as low pathogenicity avian influenza. AI viruses can be classified into low pathogenicity (LPAI) and high pathogenicity (HPAI) based on the severity of the illness they cause. HPAI is an extremely infectious and fatal form of the disease that, once established, can spread rapidly from flock to flock. However, some LPAI virus strains are capable of mutating under field conditions into HPAI viruses.The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) works to keep HPAI from becoming established in the U.S. poultry population.

What Are the Signs?
The clinical signs of birds affected with all forms of AI may show one or more of the following: Sudden death without clinical signs; Lack of energy and appetite; Decreased egg production; Soft-shelled or misshapen eggs; Swelling of the head, eyelids, comb, wattles, and hocks; Purple discoloration of the wattles, combs, and legs; Nasal discharge; Coughing, sneezing; Lack of coordination; and Diarrhea. Note: Many birds with LPAI may not show any signs of disease.

How Is AI Spread?
Exposure of poultry to migratory waterfowl and the international movement of poultry, poultry equipment, and people pose risks for introducing AI into U.S. poultry. Once introduced, the disease can be spread from bird to bird by direct contact. AI viruses can also be spread by manure, equipment, vehicles, egg flats, crates, and people whose clothing or shoes have come in contact with the virus. AI viruses can remain viable at moderate temperatures for long periods in the environment and can survive indefinitely in frozen material.
These virus strains can travel in wild birds without them appearing sick. People should avoid contact with sick/dead poultry or wildlife. If contact occurs, wash your hands with soap and water and change clothing before having any contact with healthy domestic poultry and birds.

All bird owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, should continue to practice good biosecurity, prevent contact between their birds and wild birds, and report sick birds or unusual bird deaths to State/Federal officials, either through their state veterinarian or through USDA.

Minnesota Board of Animal Health
625 Robert Street North
Saint Paul, MN 55155
Ph: 651-296-2942
Fax: 651-296-7417
TTY: 800-627-3529

USDA toll-free number at 1-866-536-7593

Additional information on biosecurity for backyard flocks can be found at


Samples for official AI testing must be collected by individuals trained and certified as authorized poultry testing agents. Once samples are collected, there are two diagnostic laboratories in Minnesota that are approved for testing samples for influenza. For detailed information on sample submission and testing for AI, contact:

Minnesota Poultry Testing Laboratory

Phone: (320) 231-5170

University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

Phone: (800) 605-8787

Equine Herpes Virus- 1 (EHV-1)

Equine Herpes Virus- 1 (EHV-1)

Dr. Casey Rabbe DVM
Faribault Veterinary Clinic

What is “Myeloencephalitis”?

Myeloencephalitis is a neurological disease that is caused by an equine herpes virus infection. Neurological diseases are those that are associated with problems in the brain and spinal cord. Equine Herpes Virus-1 (EHV-1) infection causes damage to the blood vessels that supply the brain and spinal cord of the horse. Without blood supply, these tissues are damaged, which leads to the symptoms associated with this disease. EHV-1 can also cause respiratory disease, abortions, and death in young foals. The neurological symptoms are most often due to a particular strain of this virus that has a mutation in its genes.

How common is this virus?

By 2 years of age, most horses have been exposed to the virus. Generally, exposure occurs through contact with the dam. The virus becomes inactive or “latent” in the horse’s body and causes no symptoms of disease. Stress, heavy work, transporting long distances, or weaning can cause the virus to reactivate and the horse to show symptoms of the disease. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of cases reported around the country. Outbreaks have occurred at large horse shows, boarding facilities, and racetracks. Due to the large number of exposed horses and the serious consequences of this disease, an increased awareness of the neurological form of EHV-1 is a must.


Equine Herpes Virus handout 2015_html_m4b7a10baThe neurological form of EHV-1 can occur before or after the respiratory or abortion form of EHV-1. Neurological symptoms can occur alone. Signs of myeloencephalitis include:

  • Fever (4-10 days before signs below)
  • Decreased coordination
  • Dribbling urine
  • Loss of tail tone
  • Weakness in the hind limbs
  • Leaning on walls, fences etc.
  • Inability to stand, sitting like a dog


  • Swabs taken from the nostrils of a horse can be used to isolate the virus in the laboratory or used to run a test called a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) which can detect virus in a sample.
  • A blood sample can be taken for laboratory virus isolation and PCR.
  • Two blood samples can be taken 2-3 weeks apart to determine if there has been an increase in antibodies to the EHV-1 virus, which would indicate exposure the virus.
  • Cerebral spinal fluid, fluid that surrounds the spinal cord, can be sampled for evidence of infection.Equine Herpes Virus handout 2015_html_13782e8e

**There are currently vaccines that control the respiratory and abortion forms of EHV-1, but the neurological form, myeloencephalitis, does NOT have a preventative vaccine.**

What to do if you suspect your horse has myeloencephalitis caused by EHV-1:

  • Call your veterinarian immediately. EHV-1 is a reportable disease! Immediate medical care is needed for your horse.
  • Isolate the infected horse from other horses and people. Move to a separate barn or paddock, or to a veterinary care facility.
  • Notify owners of other horses that were exposed to the infected horse in the last 10 days.
  • Isolate other exposed horses or sick horses.

Do not share equipment since the virus can be spread from contact with contaminated items.


As part of this work, we encourage horse owners to follow these equine biosecurity tips when traveling with their horse.

  1. It is always best to use your own trailer and equipment. If you must borrow, clean and disinfect items thoroughly before exposing your horse and again before returning.
  2. Don’t let your horse touch other horses, especially nose to nose.
  3. Never put the end of a shared hose in your horse’s water bucket without disinfecting first. Don’t hand-graze your horse where other horses have recently grazed.
  4. If you touch other horses, wash your hands with soap and water, and dry them well. Use disinfectant wipes or hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. Don’t let strangers pet your horse.
  5. Clean and disinfect tack, boots, equipment, and grooming supplies before returning home. Make sure to clean off dirt and manure before disinfecting.
  6. Shower, blow your nose (germs can survive a long time in nasal secretions), and put on clean clothes and shoes upon your return.
  7. Keep returning horses separate from your other horses for up to 4 weeks. When doing feeding and chores, work with the returning horses last, wear boots and coveralls, and remove them before working with your other horses.
  8. Don’t forget to wash your hands.

Remember! Symptoms of this disease indicate an emergency.

Contact your veterinarian right away