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close this bookBasic Husbandry Practices and Veterinary Care (IIRR, 1996, 60 p.)
View the documentForeword
View the documentBody parts of farm animals
View the documentNames of farm animals
View the documentFarm animals and their young
View the documentLivestock production
View the documentReproduction of poultry
View the documentBreeding
View the documentCare of calves and kids at birth
View the documentCare of piglets
View the documentFeeding orphaned animals
View the documentNutrition
View the documentDeworming
View the documentVaccination
View the documentCastration
View the documentHoof trimming
View the documentDehorning
View the documentClipping milk teeth of piglets
View the documentDisinfection of pen and equipment
View the documentWaste management and disposal
View the documentPesticides


A vaccine produces immunity or protection against a given disease. Vaccination stimulates the production of antibodies.

It is important to vaccinate animals because:

- Vaccinated animals become more resistant to outbreaks of disease.
- Vaccinated animals suffer less and recover faster from the effects of disease.

Forms of vaccine

- Powder with solvent—mix, then inject. (Example: hog cholera vaccine)
- Liquid (Example: hemorrhagic septicemia vaccine)

Antiserum can also protect animals against diseases. It comes from the blood serum of an animal which contains antibodies for a specific disease.

Comparison between vaccine and antiserum




Develops in two weeks







Small quantity

Large quantity

Site of injection

One site divided and injected into different sites.

A single large dose


Produced by the body in response to the vaccine.

Supplied by the injection.

Antibiotics are chemical substances produced by bacteria to inhibit or kill other bacteria. Antibiotics are useful to treat bacterial diseases. They are sometimes given regularly to healthy animals to prevent them from getting sick and to improve their production. This practice, however, should be discouraged because it may harm the health of people who consume the meat and milk of these animals.

Vitamins are found in foods. Animals need small regular amounts for growth, health and survival. Feeding or injecting vitamins can make animals more resistant against diseases.

Comparison between vaccination and injection of antibiotics and vitamins


Vitamin injection

Antibiotic injection

Condition of animal


Healthy or sick


Handling and storage

Strictly observed

Less critical, (though expire or spoil)

Less critical (though expire or spoil)


Produce immunity

Increase resistance

Inhibit or kill bacteria

Time of day

Early morning or late afternoon

Anytime as needed

Anytime as needed

Guidelines and precautions

- Vaccines spoil easily. Special care and precautions are necessary for their proper use.

- Only a veterinarian or a person who has special training and experience in the use of vaccines should vaccinate.

- Avoid vaccinating an animal in very hot weather.

- Vaccinate before anticipated disease outbreak.

- Do not consider vaccination as a substitute for sanitation and other preventive management practices.

- Use sterile instruments.

- Use the recommended solvent.

- Avoid contamination with other chemicals.

- Bum or bury empty bottles and vials of vaccines.

- Do not use left-over vaccines.

- Do not vaccinate weak, sick, pregnant, unhealthy, stressed and very young animals.

- To avoid contamination, use separate needles for injecting the animal and for dissolving the vaccine.

- Follow the instructions on the packaging.

Steps in administering a vaccine

1. Assess the health status and age of the animal.
2. Properly restrain the animal. (See booklet on Restraining animals and simple treatments.)
3. Dissolve and mix the vaccine (if needed) with its solvent.
4. Clean and disinfect the preferred site for injection.
5. Administer the recommended amount in the right location.
6. Properly identify vaccinated animals.
7. Closely observe vaccinated animals for allergic reactions.

Handling and storage

Vaccines are made from disease-causing microorganisms. They must be handled carefully and stored properly. Improper handling and storage may cause them to lose their effect or, worse, make them dangerous agents. They should be refrigerated but not frozen. Store in a styro foam box with ice or in refrigerators.

Factors which limit animal's response to vaccine

- Infections

- Poisoning

- Improper dosage

- Improper handling

- Heat stress

- Improper administration

Common brand names of vaccines for livestock and poultry


- Foot and mouth disease vaccine

Dosage: 2 cc per animal, regardless of size.

- Hemorrhagic septicemia vaccine Dosage: 2 cc per animal, regardless of size.
- Anti tetanus serum Dosage: minimum of 1500 international units


- Hog cholera vaccine comes in pairs-the powder and the solvent. Brand names: Suvac, Pigvax and Vadimune Dosage: 2 cc per animal, regardless of size


- Newcastle disease vaccine like NCD B1B1 should be used for young chickens only, NCD La Sota for adult chickens Dosage: a drop of NCD B1B1 in the eye/nostril per bird; 0.5 cc of NCD La Sota per bird

- Fowl pox vaccine

Vaccinating poultry

Poultry vaccines come in pairs-the powder and its accompanying solvent.

Intraocular or through the eye

This is used when vaccinating day-old chicks against Newcastle disease. (See page 39.)


1. Hold the chick firmly, not too loose or too tight.

2. Put one drop of vaccine into one of its eyes and let the chick blink before releasing it.

3. Separate the vaccinated from the unvaccinated chicks.

Intranasal or in the nose

This method can also be used in administering Newcastle disease vaccine. Follow the same procedure as in intraocular, but apply the vaccine in one of the nostrils. Such vaccines are available in poultry supply stores.

Wing web or through the wing

This is done to vaccinate chickens against fowl pox.

1. Get an assistant to hold the chicken and spread one of its wings. Vaccination site is the wing web or inner side of the wings.

2. After thoroughly mixing the vaccine (fowl pox vaccine), dip the applicator into the vaccine, then immediately pierce it through the win. web.

3. Examine for "takes" after 10 days. " Takers" are small swellings with scabs formed at the vaccination point ten days after the vaccination procedure. Lack of such a reaction indicates:

- Vaccine is less effective or has no effect at all.
- Presence of existing antibodies.
- Improper vaccination.

Takes are only applicable to fowl pox vaccination.

Water vaccination

When mixing vaccines in drinking water:

- Do not use chlorinated water or water treated with antibiotics or disinfectants.
- Do not give the vaccine in metal containers or drinkers.
- Three hours before giving the vaccines, deprive the birds with water to induce thirst.
- Provide enough drinkers.


Intramuscular or through the muscles

1. Mix the required amount of solvent with the vaccine before vaccination.

2. Disinfect the breast or thigh muscle of the chicken by rubbing it with cotton moistened with 70 percent alcohol.

3. Fill the syringe with the prescribed quantity of the vaccine-water solution.

4. Inject 0.5 cc of the solution into the muscle of the chicken.

Intramuscular vaccinating

Suggested vaccination program for livestock and poultry



1st dose

2nd dose

Next dose


Foot-and- mouth disease

2-3 mos

6-8 mos


In the muscle

Hemorrhagic septicemia

2-3 mos

6-8 mos


Under the skin


6 months

In the muscle



1st dose

2nd dose

Next dose


Foot-and-mouth- disease

1-2 mos for breeders

3-4 mos


In the muscle

Hog cholera

1-2 mos

6 mos(for replacements)


In the muscle annually for breeders. After weaning for piglets.



1st dose

2nd dose

Next dose


Newcastle disease

1-2 weeks

3-5 weeks

Before laying eggs drop


Fowl pox

34 weeks


Wing web laying eggs