Awareness, Knowledge and Practice of Pastoralists and Agro-Pastoralists towards Livestock Diseases Affecting Domestic Animals in Arusha, Manyara and Morogoro Regions, Tanzania

Chengula, A., Mdegela, R.H, Kasanga, C.J


The study was carried out to assess pastoralists and agro-pastoralists awareness, knowledge and practice in various livestock diseases affecting domestic animals in Arusha Manyara and Morogoro regions in Tanzania. Closed- and open-ended questionnaires, focus group discussions and in-depth interview techniques were employed. Diseases, drought, lack of dipping tanks, insufficient of livestock experts and drugs are the main constraints in the livestock keeping community in the study area. Nineteen diseases have been reported to affect their animals at one time or the other. East Coast fever (ECF, 79.7%), Contagious Caprine Pleuropneumonia (CCPP, 60.8%) and Trypanosomosis (50%) have been reported by more than 50% of pastoralists that they affect their animals. ECF and CCPP seem to be the leading diseases with great impact to the pastoralists by causing high mortality rates. Rift valley fever (RVF) and anthrax have been reported by majority to be diseases which appear in form of outbreak in their area. Diseases reported here are said to be controlled primarily by treating with various drugs and Oxytetracycline being a common drug of choice for most unknown diseases. Other control methods include vaccination and deworming, dipping and spray of animals using acariceides. Livestock experts have been reported to play little role in controlling common livestock diseases as majority of livestock keepers tends to treat their animals. Veterinary experts seem to be important during outbreak of diseases or for unknown diseases killing many animals. Eating of dead and improperly cooked meat together with un-boiled milk was found to be common in the pastoral community. This could lead to the spread (if any) of zoonotic diseases easily. Livestock keeping community is aware of most of common diseases circulating in their area but the way they practice to control leads to failure of control of those diseases at individual and national level.  Devising a mechanism to educate them so that they know how to handle some common and reporting outbreak diseases such as use of trained community animal health workers (CAHWs) will help control livestock diseases in Tanzania.

Keywords: community animal health workers, livelihood constraints, ECF, CCPP, CBPP, trypanosomosis, control measures


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