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What is it?

Toxovax is a vaccine used to reduce the effects of infection by Toxoplasma gondii in
sheep.
Toxoplasmosis is a disease caused by a protozoan parasite, Toxoplasma gondii.
The main source of infection is cat faeces. One cat can shed enough oocysts to
infect thousands of ewes. These oocysts are very resilient and can survive for very
long periods in feed or on pasture.
Toxoplasma gondii infection can cause early embryonic death, infertility, mummified
foetuses, stillbirths and abortion in sheep. Lambs may be born living but weak and
fail to thrive.
It is highly important to submit all ewe abortion materials to the regional laboratory
for diagnosis. Other methods of diagnosis in sheep abortion cases are less reliable.
The disease is zoonotic, which means it can be passed to humans. Pregnant women
are particularly vulnerable to infection and should avoid all involvement with lambing
ewes.

toxovax msd

Control of toxoplasmosis in sheep includes retaining sheep in the flock after
abortions confirmed to have been caused by Toxoplasma gondii (sheep that have
aborted as a result of toxoplasmosis are immune), controlling rodent populations with
neutered cats and vaccinating with Toxovax.

How to use it:

Dose: 2 ml by intramuscular injection

Basic vaccination:
Animals should be given a single dose at least 3 weeks prior to mating. Ewe lambs,
where it is intended to breed from them, may be vaccinated from 5 months of age. Shearlings and older ewes should be vaccinated during the 4-month period prior to mating.

Re-vaccination:
After 2 years, a single dose at least 3 weeks prior to mating.
Withdrawal: meat and offal 42 days.
Toxovax can be administered on the same day as but not mixed with Enzovax.

Why use it?

It can be very hard to fully prevent cats from accessing your flock’s food supply, so
vaccination against Toxoplasmosis offers an additional method of control.

Toxovax is administered to all breeding ewes in the first year and then any replacements
being introduced to the flock there after.

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“Animal Health Ireland estimate the annual cost of BVD to Irish herds totals €102 million.”


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