Poultry health care / Medicine / Use of antibiotics

Use of antibiotics

Antibiotics are used throughout the world, in all types of animals. It was not until recently that antibiotics were a standard feed additives in the commercial animal farming. These substances were banned (in EU in 2006) since bacteria may become resistant to the antibiotics that are used in animals and humans. There are two major concerns regarding the use of antibiotics:

1. The first concern when using antibiotics is; Antibiotics have to be applied over a period in time. This period  depends on the type of antibiotics and the type of bacteria that has to be eradicated. Antibiotics acts by killing the most sensitive bacteria, usually within the first two days. The more resistant bacteria die when the antibiotics are given for a longer period. Farmers have the tendency to stop the treatment after they see improvement however this may induce survival of more resistant bacteria, and on the long term this could cause resistant strains.

2. A second concern that can occur is; Bacteria multiply rapidly. One mutation could create bacteria that can survive in other species, such as humans and could be resistant to the antibiotics of choice for humans. 

The concern for antibiotic resistance is given a lot of attention throughout the world.