If your livestock are showing signs of foot-and-mouth disease, immediately call the
Emergency Animal Disease Hotline on 1800 675 888
(free call within Australia)
Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is a serious and highly contagious animal disease that affects all cloven-hoofed animals including cattle, sheep, goats, camelids, deer and pigs. Cloven-hoofed animals are those with divided hooves. It does not affect horses or zebras.
FMD is a disease of animals, not humans and is a different disease than hand, foot, and mouth disease which is common in young children. FMD is not transmitted to humans by eating affected meat.
FMD virus is carried by live animals and in meat and dairy products, as well as in soil, bones, untreated hides, vehicles and equipment used with susceptible animals. It can also be carried on people’s clothing and footwear and survive in frozen, chilled and freeze-dried foods.
An incursion of the virus would have severe consequences for Australia’s animal health and trade.
Latest on FMD
In May 2022, an outbreak of FMD was reported in cattle in Indonesia. FMD has since been detected in a number of Indonesia’s provinces.
The Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture has indicated that control of FMD and lumpy skin disease remains a priority and surveillance, biosecurity, vaccination and movement controls will continue to be implemented. Australia has provided ongoing support for Indonesia’s response to these diseases.
The emergence and continued spread of FMD in Indonesia changed the risk profile for passengers and goods arriving in Australia. As result we strengthened our border activities and new measures were implemented to help prevent an incursion.
Learn more about the disease and its potential impact on animals and our economy.
What we’re doing to prevent and prepare for an incursion.
Know the signs of FMD, find out how to protect your animals and prepare your property.
Advice for travellers returning from FMD infected countries.
What to consider when ordering goods online.
Information for vets including surveillance and reporting.
Foot-and-mouth disease, FMD, is a highly contagious viral disease of cattle, pigs, sheep and goats.
The virus has not been detected in Australia for more than 100 years.
But we should be aware of the risks of FMD arriving on our shores.
FMD can be transmitted in air particles between animals housed closely together.
And it’s easily spread through contaminated feed and water, animal transport vehicles, and equipment, clothing and footwear.
It’s important that livestock industries and animal owners are alert to the symptoms of FMD.
Typical signs in animals are:
- blisters on the nose, tongue, lips, mouth, between the toes and around hooves
- extreme drooling
- loss of appetite and weight
- depression and a drop in milk production.
FMD is a disease of animals, not humans and is a different disease and virus than hand, foot, and mouth disease of children.
To protect Australia’s animal health and trade, we have well-developed disease outbreak procedures in place.
And even though the risk to Australia remains low, our border protection measures are focused on imports of goods from high-risk countries.
We’re also making sure travellers are aware of their biosecurity responsibilities.
If you suspect your animal is showing signs of foot and mouth disease, you must report it.
You can do this by calling the national Emergency Animal Disease Hotline on 1800 675 888.