You are here: Defra > Animal Diseases > Notifiable diseases

Notifiable diseases

If you suspect signs of any of the notifiable diseases in the tables on this page, you must immediately notify your local AHVLA office.

Main diseases

The main diseases we are primarily concerned with are as follows.

Disease Main species affected Disease type Occurred last in Great Britain
African horse sickness Horses Exotic Never
African swine fever Pigs Exotic Never
Avian influenza (bird flu) Poultry Exotic and Zoonotic 2008
Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy Cattle Zoonotic Present
Bovine TB (tuberculosis) Cattle and deer Endemic Present
Bluetongue All ruminants and camelids Exotic 2008
Classical swine fever Pigs Exotic 2000
Contagious equine metritis Horses Exotic 2012
Equine infectious anaemia Horses Exotic 2012
Equine viral arteritis Horses Exotic 2010
European bat lyssavirus (EBLV) Bats Exotic and Zoonotic 2008
Foot and Mouth Disease Cattle, sheep, pigs and other cloven hoofed animals Exotic 2007
Newcastle Disease Poultry Exotic 2006
Rabies (classical) Dogs and other mammals Exotic and Zoonotic 1970

Further diseases

Information about the following diseases – most of which have never, or only very rarely, been recorded in Great Britain – is currently available on Defra’s archive website:

Notifiable Disease Main species affected Disease type Occurred last in Great Britain
Anthrax Cattle and other mammals Zoonotic 2006
Aujeszky’s Disease Pigs and other mammals Exotic 1989
Brucellosis (Brucella abortus) Cattle Exotic 2004
Brucellosis (Brucella melitensis) Sheep and Goats Exotic & Zoonotic Never
Contagious agalactia Sheep and Goats Exotic Never
Contagious bovine pleuro-pneumonia Cattle Exotic 1898
Contagious epididymitis (Brucella ovis) Sheep and Goats Exotic Never
Dourine Horses Exotic Never
Enzootic bovine leukosis Cattle Exotic 1996
Epizootic haemorrhagic virus disease Deer Exotic Never
Epizootic lymphangitis Horses Exotic 1906
Equine viral encephalomyelitis Horses Exotic & Zoonotic Never
Glanders and Farcy Horses Exotic 1928
Goat pox Goats Exotic Never
Lumpy skin disease Cattle Exotic Never
Paramyxovirus of pigeons Pigeons Exotic Present
Pest des petits ruminants Sheep and Goats Exotic Never
Rift valley fever Cattle, Sheep and Goats Exotic & Zoonotic Never
Rinderpest (cattle plague) Cattle Exotic 1877
Scrapie (part of Defra’s archive BSE pages) Sheep and goats Endemic Present
Sheep pox Sheep Exotic 1866
Swine vesicular disease Pigs Exotic 1982
Teschen disease (Porcine enterovirus encephalomyelitis) Pigs Exotic Never
Vesicular stomatitis Cattle, pigs and horses Exotic Never
Warble fly Cattle, (also deer and horses) Exotic 1990
West Nile virus Horses Exotic & Zoonotic Never

Key legal requirements

A notifiable disease is a disease named in section 88 of the Animal Health Act 1981 or an Order made under that Act. Section 15(1) of the Act says that:

“any person having in their possession or under their charge an animal affected or suspected of having one of these diseases must, with all practicable speed, notify that fact to a police constable.”

  • Horse Diseases – details of diseases covered by the Infectious Diseases of Horses Order 1987.
  • Specified Diseases – details of diseases made compulsorily notifiable by the Specified Diseases (Notification and Slaughter) Order 1992 (as amended) and the Specified Diseases (Notification) Order 1996 (as amended) to enact European Union Legislation

The Specified Diseases legislation extends the definition of “disease” in section 88 of the Animal Health Act 1981 to include the above diseases, and applies section 32 of the Act, which enables the Secretary of State to cause animals to be slaughtered on account of disease, to apply to these diseases.

Council Directive 92/119 does provide that certain specified Diseases shall be subject to compulsory slaughter, and the imposition of 3 km protection zone and a 10 km surveillance zone around premises where disease is confirmed. Restrictions would remain in force for a variable time depending on the incubation period of the disease in question.

Page last modified: 10 May 2013