Disease Investigations

Disease investigation are an important part of sheep flock management. Mt Barker Veterinary Hospital offers extensive services and experience in disease investigation including:


Post-mortem Examinations

Post mortem examinations can be conducted to investigate sudden death/s, illthrift or unresponsive disease within your herd or flock. Dead or moribund animals can be examined. If a diagnosis is not found at the time tissue samples are sent away to external laboratories for bacterial culture etc., cytology and histopathology. If numerous animals are affected or there is a possible biosecurity risk (such as neurological disease outbreaks) there are grants available to help cover the cost of the disease investigation. Please contact the veterinary hospital if you are experiencing unusual losses or disease.


Liver Fluke Testing

All livestock including horses that enter WA must be liver fluke treated 21-35 days post arrival and faecal tested 90-100 days post arrival in WA. The samples must be collected / collection supervised by a veterinarian and the sample tested by a approved laboratory.

For more infomation on liver fluke see this website. http://cht.net.au/liver-fluke-and-restricted-goods/


Worm Egg Count Testing and Larval Culture

For further information see the 'Worm Egg counting' section.


Reproductive Diseases and Poor Fertility - Cattle

In cases of poor reproduction performance where physical bull breakdown has been ruled out reproductive diseases need to be explored.


Common reproductive diseases include Leptospirosis, Neospora, Vibriosis, Campylobacter and BVDV (Bovine Viral Diarrhoea Virus), which can all be tested for in a reproductive disease work-up.


BVDV especially is an important reproductive disease which can present itself in many forms within a herd. Animals can be infected and suffer from early embryonic loss, abortions, still births and / or weak calves. Other animals can become persistently infected (PI) and spread the virus through your herd. BVDV within your herd can be difficult to see and can be diagnosed by blood testing and / or ear notching your cattle. If you have any concerns about your reproduction rate please contact us and we can discuss the diagnosis and treatment options.   


Brucellosis Testing - Sheep

Brucellosis causes epididymitis in rams and is a significant cause of in infertility in sheep enterprises. It most often is detected because of low lambing rates and / or palpable lesions noted in rams' testicles. Eradication of the disease through culling and re-stocking is the only means of treating the issue. For more information on Brucellosis or to discuss your sheep enterprise risk please call our veterinary hospital.


Production Loss

We have a number of tools to investigate sup-optimal production:

  • Internal and external parasite programs
  • Testing of minerals and trace elements essential to optimal production
  • Water testing
  • Complete feed analysis of pellets, grains, hay, silage or grasses including digestible energy (DE), protein, carbohydrates and mineral composition. We can also test for mycotoxins if this is indicated.