state . This applies especially to equine arteritis virus . Moreover , the responsibility for ensuring the safety of breeding stallion populations ultimately resides with the equine industry .
CONTACT : Peter Timoney , MVB , MS , PhD , FRCVS ptimoney @ uky . edu ( 859 ) 218-1094 Maxwell H . Gluck Equine Research Center University of Kentucky Lexington , KY
The Importance of Cleaning to Disinfection
Cleaning and disinfecting stalls is critically important for biosecurity , especially in controlling disease outbreaks . However , much misinformation exists . The average 1,000-pound horse produces 50 pounds of manure and urine per day . Add on to that other body fluids that potentially contain pathogens ( nasal discharges , abscess material , blood , etc .), and significant organic load exists in the average horse stall . Any surface that needs to be disinfected ( treated with chemicals in order to kill pathogens ) must be cleaned of dirt and organic material first . Cleaning a stall takes detergent and manual labor . Power washers should not be used to avoid aerosolizing pathogens . Despite advertising claims , no “ one step ” product exists that can be sprayed on a dirty stall and effectively kill pathogens .
Surfaces must be scrubbed with a detergent or cleaning agent to loosen and remove as much organic matter as possible . Detergents are cleaning agents that emulsify ( loosen ) organic matter without forming a “ soap scum ” residue . A detergent should be used to scrub stall surfaces followed by rinsing to physically remove dirt and organic matter . Only after surfaces have been cleaned should they be sprayed with a disinfectant . Studies have shown that over 90 % of bacteria are removed from surfaces that are thoroughly cleaned first . Considering that equine herpesviruses , influenza viruses , and equine arteritis virus are lipid-enveloped , cleaning surfaces with detergent will disrupt this envelope , helping to render these viruses inactive . While bleach is an effective disinfectant on “ hard , non-porous , previously cleaned surfaces ,” horse stalls on farms are rarely constructed of such materials . Bleach is also rapidly inactivated by organic matter . Disinfectant labels state : “ It is a violation of Federal law to use this product in a manner inconsistent with its labeling .” Users should understand and follow label instructions and call the manufacturer with any specific questions . If the label states “ dilute . ounce of disinfectant concentrate in one gallon of water ,” use that dilution . Increasing the amount of chemical assuming it will overcome a dirty surface is a waste of time and money and could pose health hazards to people and animals .
Never mix different disinfectants together . For example , bleach combined with ammonia or strong oxiders can produce lethal gas and dangerous chemical compounds . Every approved disinfectant in the USA has a Safety Data Sheet ( previously known as Material Safety Data Sheet ) which is available from the manufacturer and contains valuable information . The statement “ Proven effective against the following organisms ,” followed by a long list of pathogens , is on many disinfectant labels . However , in the fine print is how this list was generated . Most disinfectants have been tested in the presence of 5 % serum as the “ organic ” load . A feces-stained stall wall has an organic load much higher than 5 % serum , which is why cleaning is critical to the effectiveness of any disinfectant . Excellent infection control and disinfectant information is available at www . cfsph . iastate . edu and at www . aaep . org .
CONTACT : Roberta M . Dwyer , DVM , MS , DACVPM rmdwyer @ uky . edu ( 859 ) 218-1122 Department of Animal and Food Sciences University of Kentucky Lexington , KY Presorted Standard US Postage Paid Permit 51 Lexington KY