Become an Antibiotic Guardian
Just like for people, antibiotics are vital tools for the veterinary profession to treat our pets when they have a bacterial infection. But bacteria can adapt, and become resistant to antibiotics, and some antibiotics are even losing their effectiveness. The human medical and veterinary profession are working together to help keep antibiotics effective by using them responsibly and reducing their unnecessary use.
While antibiotics for your pet are of course prescribed by your vet if your pet needs them, you too can play your part in their responsible use and become an Antibiotic Guardian.
Each year, on 18 November, European Antibiotic Awareness Day takes place. In 2014, Public Health England (PHE) has an initiative encouraging us to become Antibiotic Guardians. In conjunction with DEFRA, it is urging members of the public and healthcare professionals (both doctors and vets) to join in the campaign and take action to help make sure antibiotics work now and in the future.
To become an Antibiotic Guardian pet owners, along with other sectors of the public and healthcare and veterinary professionals, can choose and enact a pledge about how they will make better use of antibiotics. Visit www.antibioticguardian.com to sign up. As a pet owner, you can choose from the following pledges:
- If my vet prescribes antibiotics I will give them in accordance with the instructions on the label and make sure a full course is given
- To help reduce the need for antibiotics I will keep my animal healthy through exercise, good nutrition, relevant vaccination and by having regular veterinary health checks
- If my pet(s) are prescribed antibiotics by my vet, I will use them as instructed on the label and not give them to another animal