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In This Issue
Reimbursement Reminders
Monensin and Johne's Disease
Management Plans
Quick Links


Welcome to spring!
See below for important updates, reminders, and reviews regarding the Wisconsin Johne's Disease Control Program.   
Reimbursement Reminders
DEADLINE EXTENDED  -  Johne's Veterinary Certification Reimbursement
Johne's disease courses taken between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2010 are eligible for partial reimbursement.  There are many people eligible for reimbursement who have not yet submitted a W-9 form.  If you have not already done so, please complete and submit a W-9 form by April 15 to receive reimbursement for eligible course fees.
2010 Invoices
Due to variations in the reimbursement funding cycle, producer invoices for costs incurred January 1, 2010 to March 31, 2010 need to be submitted by April 15, 2010 to ensure payment for those charges.   
Monensin and Johne's Disease
Photo by WI DATCP
Cows eating
Several studies have been performed evaluating the use of monensin and its effects on Johne's disease.  Further work is needed to determine if and how this may fit into a Johne's disease control program. 
Some recent investigations have suggested that monensin can decrease the amount of shedding in adult cows and may reduce infection in calves.  The clinical significance of these findings is still unknown.  See the Proceedings from the 2nd New Horizons in Johne's Disease Control Workshop for more details and references.
Management Plans
Maximize Their Effectiveness 
As you might imagine, there is substantial variation in the management plans we review, from the very detailed and lengthy to the very brief and general. 
Just like when setting any goals, extra details or too many things to address at once can be overwhelming and lead to inaction.  Goals that are too broad, while highlighting excellent general concepts, do not state specific steps and also can lead to inaction.

Here are a few recommendations that are a little too general as examples:
  • "Reduce exposure of weaned calves to adult cows"   
  • "Try to calve in clean area"
  • "Pay attention to not feeding waste milk"
Although there is no one right way to complete a management plan, the trick to increase the effectiveness of the plan is to establish, in collaboration with the producer, a few specific management practices on which to focus for the next year.  This will take into account what that producer is able and willing to actually do to reduce the Johne's transmission risks identified by their farm's risk assessment. 
These are most effectively written as clear, concise action statements that specify how an individual producer will follow through on general recommendations.
Photo courtesy of USDA NRCS
species collage

Compare these management practices to those listed above:  
  • "Construct a plywood barrier between calf pen and cow walkway to isolate calves and reduce splatter"
  • "Clean and disinfect calving area between calvings"
  • "Feed milk replacer instead of waste milk to calves" or "Feed only pasteurized waste milk"
Although these specific management practices address the same risks as the general statements above, the specific practices clearly identify what will be done. Of course, the specific actions chosen will differ among producers, depending on their financial, labor, and facility resources.

For further guidance and more examples, refer to How to Do Risk Assessments and Management Plans for Johne's Disease.

Please feel free to contact us at DATCPJohnes@wi.gov or 608-224-4893 with any questions about the Wisconsin Johne's Disease Control Program or suggestions for future newsletters.  
Elisabeth Patton, DVM, PhD, Dip. ACVIM
Wisconsin Dept. of Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection
Division of Animal Health