Bovine Serological Survey
Animal health protection is vital to food safety and public health outcomes, the trade of Canadian livestock and livestock products, and the economic well-being of Canada’s agriculture sector. To this end, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) works closely and collaboratively with provincial governments and livestock and poultry industries to conduct regular animal disease surveillance activities.
Included in these activities is a national Bovine Serological Survey, which is conducted every three to five years. This survey provides valuable data to support Canada’s disease status for brucellosis, bluetongue and anaplasmosis.
How does the Bovine Serological Survey work?
The CFIA collects random blood samples from cattle at slaughter. Samples are sent to a CFIA laboratory, where they undergo a series of screening tests, known as "serological tests".
What does a positive serological test result mean?
A positive result from a serological test means that an animal was exposed to a virus at some point previously. It does not mean that an animal is currently infected. A positive result provides an indication that further investigation is required.
What action does the CFIA take if a sample tests positive?
When serological testing turns up a positive result, the CFIA locates the animal’s farm of origin and traces the animal’s history. Agency staff visit farms on which infected animals lived to assess the health of the herds and to complete an epidemiological investigation. If a herd is deemed to be at risk of the disease, samples are taken for testing at a CFIA laboratory.
If an infected animal is detected, the CFIA initiates disease control measures, which vary from quarantine and testing to destruction of infected animals, depending on the disease. Producers are awarded compensation for any animals ordered destroyed by the CFIA for disease control purposes.
How many samples are tested under the Bovine Serological Survey?
The 2007-2008 Bovine Serological Survey tested approximately 15,000 samples.
- Date modified: