Evaluating the efficacy of boot baths in biosecurity protocols

Sandra F. Amass, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ABVP; Bryan D. Vyverberg; Darryl Ragland, DVM, PhD; Carol A. Dowell; Cheryl D. Anderson; Jason H. Stover; Dwight J. Beaudry

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Objectives: (1) To determine whether type of disinfectant, scrubbing of boots, or cleanliness of the boot bath affects boot bath efficacy; and, (2) to determine the length of time that manure-free boots must soak in disinfectant before disinfection occurs.

Methods: Boots were contaminated using pig manure, then disinfected according to individual protocols. Five repetitions were performed for each treatment. A 75-mm2 (0.12-sq in) area was sampled from the bottom (sole) of each boot before and after treatment. Samples were diluted and cultured. Total bacterial counts per 75-mm2 sampling area were calculated. Mean bacterial counts before and after treatments were compared.

Results: The type of disinfectant was irrelevant if manure was not removed from the surface of boots prior to disinfection. Scrubbing was indicated to adequately remove manure. Contaminated boot baths increased boot contamination during cleaning. Disinfection was accomplished after manure-free boots were soaked in Roccal(TM)-D Plus for 5 minutes.

Implications: Proper disinfection of boots includes removing all visible manure from boots and then soaking the boot in a clean bath of disinfectant for the time period recommended on the disinfectant label. Improper boot cleaning methods waste time and money and may place the herd at risk of pathogen spread.

Keywords: boot baths, disinfection, biosecurity

RIS citationCite as: Amass SF, Vyerberg BD, Ragland D, et al. Evaluating the efficacy of boot baths in biosecurity protocols. J Swine Health Prod 2000;8(4):169-173.

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