- Make sure you use the right medicine for the right reason. Medicine can be used for prevention (for example, de-wormers and dips) or for treatment.
- Always read the instructions for the medicine, or ask someone to explain them to you.
- Make sure the medicine is meant for this type of animal. Chicken medicine cannot be used for cattle, for example.
- Check the expiry date. If it’s past the expiry date, the medicine will not work properly.
- Ensure that medicines are stored properly and kept away from children.
- Give the right dose. Too little medicine may not work, and too much may be harmful.
- Use the right method when giving the medicine. The instructions will tell you what this is.
- If you use a needle and syringe, both should be new or boiled, so that they are sterile. Do not use the same needle on different animals.
- Give the medicine for the period prescribed or it will not work. For example, a drug may need to be given daily for three days. Look at the instructions for guidance.
- Remember: medicine can spread through the animal’s tissues and milk. Wait for the end of the medicine’s withdrawal period (read the instructions) before using the animal’s meat or milk. Animal medicine can make humans sick.
If in doubt, contact your animal health technician or state or private vet.
Source: Directorate Communication, department of agriculture, in co-operation with ARC–Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute.