Animal Disease Economic,Politica and Social Impacts:Damages for Animals



The term diseasebroadly refers to any condition that impairs normal function, and is always associated with dysfunction of normal homeostasis. Commonly, term disease is used to refer specifically to infectious diseases, which are clinically evident diseases that result from the presence of pathogenic microbial agents, including viruses, bacteria, fungi, protozoa, multicellular organisms, and aberrant proteins known as prions. An infection that does not and will not produce clinically evident impairment of normal functioning, such as the presence of the normal bacteria and yeasts in the gut, is not considered a disease; by contrast, an infection that is asymptomatic during its incubation period, but expected to produce symptoms later, is usually considered a disease. Non-infectious diseases are all other diseases, including most forms of cancer, heart disease, and genetic disease.

Livestock diseases are the ones which affects livestock, they can spread directly or indirect from the animals to the people as referred to as Zoonotic diseases like Rift valley fiver (RVF), Anthrax, Tuberculosis (TB) and Brucellosis. Mostly livestock diseases are associated with Economic, social and political losses when its outbreak is in a given community.


Economically livestock diseases can cause many losses like:-

  • Labour.

Animals like Cattle, Donkeys, Horse and Camels can be used as Draft power but many diseases when attack animals such as East cost fever (ECF) and Anaplasmosis can weaken the animal and if not treated can cause death hence loss of labor.

  • Fibre

A diseased animal can automatically produce low quality products. For example sheep if become diseased can produce low quality of wool which isvulnerable as raw material for industry as well as Goat and Pigs if become diseased can also produce poor quality hairs. Sarcoptic mange can cause these if not treated.

  • Death

The economic losses due to death  can be into two ways; either by the death of the animal itself where the owner loses his/her animals for example Rift valley fever in Dodoma in the year 2006, or  indirectly through people eating contaminated animal products and by- products.

  • Reduction in production and reproduction

Diseases always tend lower production and reproduction if canattack the animals, for better  production and  reproduction the animal need to be in peace and harmony, if become diseased the animal can fail to perform normally. For example Trypanosomosis disease and all Tick borne disease like Anaplasmosis, Heart water and Babesiosis.

  • Income loses

Treatment of a diseased animal involves the use of drugs which incur money, but not only that other efforts like eradication and prevention should be combined in order to combat the problem. The government is involved in prevention and eradication measures because without it livestock keepers fail to run the programs by themselves. All the three measures involve the use of money so by this way there could be the loss of income. Diseases like Contagious Pleural Pneumonia (CBPP) and Rinderpest under the efforts of Tanzanian Government have been eradicated.

  • Loss of market

The diseases tend to affect both domestic and International markets; they lower the production and reproduction. Production under Diseased animal is poor in quality so low price of the product and by-products in question, in this way there should be exclusion in both local and international markets. For example the exportation of Beef was prohibited after the eruption of FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE (FMD) in Tanzania.


Diseases can also cause social loses in varies ways like Death of human and animals, unemployment to people, food problems, interference with sports schedules, failure of the society to run as normal their Religious and toobs, failure of animals to do security, Transports as well as loss of permanent settlement of the people.

  • Death of human and animals

Some diseases are fatal in the way that when they attack animals can cause death but due to their Zoonosis can also kill human, take an example of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) and Anthrax its eruption in the area it kills both human and animals. RVF in 2006/2007 in Tanzania – Dodoma

Region killed both animals and human.

  • Unemployment

Animal keeping can involve people working on the business depending on the size of the farm. Diseases like Anthrax when attack a farm can kill sometimes all the animals in this way there shouldbe no need to have the same manpower instead the manpower can be minimized to suit the number of animals to be taken care, in this way people can lose their jobs (Redundancy)

  • Food problem

Human are solely independent on animal products, from this point occurrence of Diseases at a particular area can affect the production of animals, diseased animal cannot perform well in production and if the animal is to be treated there could be withdraw period on which its products should be discarded, for Zoonotic diseases all the animal products can be prohibited for human use, fatal diseases like Anthrax and Rift Valley fever, African Swine fever , Quarantine is set for the animal themselves,their products and by-products not to cross the border. In this way can cause animal products and its by-products to become scarce for human use.

  • Interference with sports schedules

Animals are used in sports, For example Corks are used in Cockfight, Bulls in Bullfight, Horses in horse race e.t.c. and if these animals should have to travel from one point to another for the purpose of performing such sports and if there is eruption of diseases it could become very difficult due to sickness of the animal itself or due to quarantine being set by the Government. The animals to be transported should be free from diseases, Newcastle diseases for example if affects the cock cannot perform such cockfight sport. In this way can interfere with the normal routine of sports schedule.

  • Religious and taboos

In Tanzania for example many societies use animals in paying of Dowry and or animals can be used in Sacrifice, it is not possible to use the animals for such purpose if they are sick. Diseases like East Coast fever or for fatal diseases like Anthrax or Rift Valley Fever, this interferes with social activities.

  • Animal security

Animals like Dogs are commonly used for security either in homes or by Police (Police dogs), this is possible if the animal is in good health, if the animal is diseased can never perform the security works and it sometimes die if is attacked with disease like Rabies.

  • Draft power

Horses, Cattle, Donkeys and Camels can be used for draft power.  Cattle and Donkeys are used for ploughing; pulling ox-carts while Camels and horses for transportation of luggage.

  • Loss of  permanent settlement

When there is occurrence of diseases  somewhere can cause worry to people and it may happen that some people tend to migrate from one locality to another and by doing so they lose their settlement, when  RVF occurred In  Dodoma in 2006/2007 people because of death worry they migrated to other areas try to save their lives.


 All over the World politicians they govern the countries and among of the sources of economy can be Livestock, from livestock through selling of live animals and their products and by-products can help on supporting the economy of the country. If there could be an occurrence of any livestock disease and because it will affect the National economy the Government must invest try to solve the problem, by doing so two things may happen i.e; Reallocation of budget and or Government instability.

  • Reallocation of budget

When the Government Budgeting for livestock it budgets for prevention of diseases, it happens on the way that there is an eruption of a certain a disease without its expectation, in order to solve the problem it is required to have money for solving the problem and because it was not budgeted before reallocation of budget is required to get money and solve the problem.

  • Government instability

The Government is stable when it is trusted by its citizens. In Kenya for example when there is an eruption of FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE (FMD) it was a same time when also the problem was facing European countriesand in order to eradicate the problem it was by slaughtering all the animals either already affected or not. The difference between the European countries and the situation in Kenya was the compensation of all the slaughtered animals, European countries was compensated their farmers but the situation was not in Kenya so there was misunderstanding between the Government and livestock keepers, being in this situation there was  Government instability.


It is important to control diseases because they cause many losses to livestock and their products, hence losses to individuals and national as whole.

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