Foreign animal diseases are diseases which are not normally present in United States animal populations. They are commonly called “FADs,” or cross boundary animal diseases. The majority of FADs are capable of rapidly spreading and causing high numbers of deaths and devastating economic consequences in US animal populations.
The most well-known example of a FAD is foot and mouth disease. Foot and mouth disease is currently affecting animals in other parts of the world, but it has not been the cause of disease outbreaks in the U.S. since 1929.
If you suspect a FAD on your farm, it is very important to contact your veterinarian immediately. If you do not have a veterinarian or cannot reach them, there is an animal emergency hotline at the Delaware Department of Agriculture. You can call 302-233-1480 at any time of the day or night, and on weekends or holidays. You will be asked to leave a message stating the nature of your emergency, and one of the Poultry and Animal health staff members or veterinarians will call you back within a short time period.
If you have a suspected animal disease emergency during normal working hours, you can reach a live person at 302-698-4500. State your emergency and ask for the Poultry and Animal Health section.
Below you can find more detailed information on a variety of foreign animal diseases and other links regarding diagnosis and response to FADs.