a branch of veterinary science concerned with the prevention of disease in animals and the protection of humans against diseases common to man and animals; it is also concerned with the preparation of animal products and high-quality feeds.
Measures to protect human health require veterinary supervision in the animal-slaughtering, canning, dairy, tanning, and other industries that process animal products; such supervision is also required at enterprises where products of animal origin are stored and sold. Measures to prevent disease in animals involve maintenance of a certain level of animal care, storage and treatment of feeds, collection and storage of manure, disinfection, collection of carcasses, and protection of soil and water against pollution. The industrial production of animal products and the specialization of agricultural production, which have resulted in the concentration of a large number of animals in limited areas, has made it necessary to organize extensive programs to protect animals against various diseases and to create conditions most likely to increase disease resistance.
It was not until L. Pasteur’s discoveries in the 19th century that veterinary hygiene had a scientific foundation. In 1887, V. E. Vorontsov, K. N. Vinogradov, and N. F. Kolesnikov formulated scientific procedures for the treatment of soil, manure, livestock buildings, hides, wool, and hairs infected by the causative agent of anthrax. Soviet scientists have introduced methods of detecting anthrax-infected hides, disinfecting raw material of animal origin, and conserving and maintaining the quality of hides. They have studied the use of coronal discharges to produce disinfectant aerosols, devised histochemical methods for elucidating the innermost processes of interaction between the microbial cell and chemical agent, synthesized new disinfectants, and studied and introduced into production methods of disinfecting livestock buildings, transport facilities, industrial areas, and plants engaged in processing food products and raw materials of animal origin.
Veterinary hygiene today is actively working toward the prevention of disease in large animal-raising complexes and toward ward the protection of such enterprises from harmful arthropods. Veterinary hygiene aims to improve the quality of animal products and raw materials of animal origin.