Pine Knoll Sheep & Wool

The Best Treatment for Codd in Sheep


Contagious Ovine Digital Dermatitis (CODD) is a severe infectious disease affecting the hooves of sheep, leading to lameness and significant welfare concerns. CODD, caused by various bacterial pathogens including Treponema species, requires effective and timely intervention to prevent widespread outbreaks and ensure the health of the flock. In this comprehensive guide, we explore the best treatment strategies for CODD in sheep, combining veterinary expertise, practical management tips, and the latest research findings.

The best treatment for Codd in sheep

Understanding CODD

Symptoms and Diagnosis

CODD manifests through several stages, starting with mild lesions and progressing to severe hoof damage and detachment. Early symptoms include redness and swelling at the coronary band, followed by ulceration and undermining of the hoof wall. Advanced cases show severe lameness, extensive hoof detachment, and secondary infections.

Diagnosing CODD involves clinical examination of the affected hooves and identifying characteristic lesions. Veterinarians may take samples for laboratory analysis to confirm the presence of Treponema and other bacteria.

Risk Factors and Transmission

CODD spreads rapidly within flocks through direct contact and contaminated environments. Risk factors include high stocking density, wet and muddy conditions, and poor biosecurity measures. Implementing strict hygiene practices and monitoring flock health is crucial in minimizing the risk of CODD outbreaks.

The best treatment for Codd in sheep

Best Treatment Strategies

Early Intervention

Early detection and intervention are key to successfully managing CODD. Regular hoof inspections help identify early signs of the disease, allowing for prompt treatment. Isolate-affected sheep to prevent the spread of infection and initiate treatment as soon as possible.

Antibiotic Therapy

Antibiotic treatment is a cornerstone in managing CODD. Injectable antibiotics, such as oxytetracycline and amoxicillin, are commonly used due to their efficacy against the causative bacteria. Treatment should be administered under veterinary supervision, following proper dosage and duration guidelines.

Topical Antibiotics

In addition to injectable antibiotics, topical treatments can be applied directly to the affected hooves. Footbaths containing solutions like formalin or copper sulfate are effective in reducing bacterial load and promoting healing. Ensure that footbaths are maintained correctly to avoid reinfection.

Pain Management

CODD causes significant pain and discomfort, necessitating effective pain management. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as meloxicam, can alleviate pain and inflammation, improving the overall welfare of the sheep. Administer pain relief under veterinary guidance to ensure safety and effectiveness.

Hoof Trimming and Care

Regular hoof trimming is essential in managing CODD and preventing its recurrence. Proper hoof care reduces stress on the affected area and promotes healing. Trimming should be performed by trained personnel to avoid causing further damage.

Preventive Hoof Care

Implement a routine hoof care program that includes regular inspections, cleaning, and trimming. Maintain dry and clean living conditions to minimize the risk of infections. Use disinfectants in housing areas and ensure good drainage to reduce moisture buildup.

The best treatment for Codd in sheep

Biosecurity Measures

Quarantine Protocols

Introduce quarantine measures for new and returning animals to prevent the introduction of CODD into the flock. Isolate new sheep for a minimum of 21 days and monitor for signs of disease before integrating them with the main flock.

Hygiene Practices

Enhance biosecurity by implementing strict hygiene practices. Clean and disinfect equipment, housing, and footbaths regularly. Provide clean bedding and ensure proper waste management to minimize the risk of contamination.

Environmental Management

Maintain dry and well-ventilated living conditions to reduce moisture and bacterial proliferation. Use bedding materials that promote dryness, such as straw or wood shavings. Consider rotating pastures to avoid overgrazing and muddy conditions.

Vaccination and Research

Current Vaccination Options

While there is no specific vaccine for CODD, research is ongoing to develop effective vaccination strategies. Vaccines targeting footrot, another common hoof disease, may provide some cross-protection against CODD. Consult with a veterinarian to explore vaccination options and stay informed about emerging research.

Future Research Directions

Continued research into the pathogens responsible for CODD and their interactions is vital for developing targeted treatments and vaccines. Support and stay updated on scientific advancements to improve CODD management practices.

Monitoring and Record-Keeping

Health Monitoring

Implement a robust health monitoring system to track the incidence and severity of CODD in the flock. Regularly assess the effectiveness of treatment protocols and adjust strategies based on observed outcomes.

Record-Keeping Practices

Maintain detailed records of hoof inspections, treatments, and health status of individual sheep. Accurate record-keeping helps in identifying trends, evaluating treatment efficacy, and making informed management decisions.

The best treatment for Codd in sheep

Farmer Education and Training

Training Programs

Provide training programs for farm staff on CODD identification, treatment, and prevention. Educate workers on the importance of early detection, proper hoof care, and biosecurity measures. Ensure that all personnel are equipped with the knowledge and skills to manage CODD effectively.

Veterinary Collaboration

Work closely with veterinarians to develop and implement comprehensive CODD management plans. Regular veterinary consultations ensure that treatment protocols are up-to-date and tailored to the specific needs of the flock.


Effective management of Contagious Ovine Digital Dermatitis (CODD) in sheep requires a multifaceted approach combining early intervention, antibiotic therapy, pain management, hoof care, and stringent biosecurity measures. By adopting best practices and staying informed about the latest research, farmers can protect their flocks from the debilitating effects of CODD and promote overall sheep welfare. At [Your Company Name], we are committed to supporting sheep farmers with expert guidance and resources to tackle CODD and ensure the health and productivity of their flocks.

Scroll to Top