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Animal Diseases and Biosecurity

Johne's disease is a chronic wasting disease of ruminants caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (aka MAP or paratuberculosis). The disease is very costly as it affects livestock producers through a variety of ways including excessive culling, death losses, increased feed costs, sub-optimal production, and decreased fertility. The disease is incurable; prevention is the most cost-effective way to manage Johne's disease. It is far less expensive to prevent introducing Johne's disease into a herd than it is to control or eradicate the infection once it is introduced and invisibly starts to spread.

Certification program

The Uniform Program Standards for the Voluntary Bovine Johne’s Disease Control Program, developed by USDA, provides nationwide guidance and contains general disease control provisions for dairy and beef cattle producers.  

The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) Johne's Disease Herd Certification Process uses this document to provide a structured framework which veterinarians, herd owners, and herd managers can use to develop meaningful herd management plans. Herd testing strategies are used to achieve Johne’s disease (JD) herd classification levels. Herd classification levels 1-6 are based on test type, test results, herd size, and takes statistical probabilities into consideration. The system allows herds with low prevalence to participate in the herd classification component and also allows for the use of testing strategies such as pooled fecal culture, direct PCR, and ELISA screening tests. In this system, the higher the classification level, the lower the risk that the herd is transmitting Johne’s disease.

How to participate

Interested herd owners may apply for ODA herd classification recognition status. 

In addition to yearly testing requirements, a disease Risk Assessment and Management Plan (RAMP) is required every three years as well as certification that the owner and his veterinarian are familiar with the US Voluntary Bovine Johne’s Disease Control Program and its requirements. An ODA Animal Health Program official will review the application and supporting documents. The appropriate herd classification level will be assigned and a certificate is provided recognizing the herd level requirements that have been met.


Bovine Johne’s Disease Control Program Standards (2010)

USDA JD Program standards

Handbook for veterinarians and beef producers on JD (2011)

Johne’s handbook for vets and beef producers

Handbook for veterinarians and dairy producers on JD (2011)

Johne’s handbook for vets and dairy producers

Johne's disease Q & A for bovine producers

Johne’s disease questions and answers

Risk assessments and management plans for Johne's disease

Handbook for cattle herds in JD Control Program





Animal Health
635 Capitol St NE
Salem, OR 97301
Phone: 503-986-4680
Fax: 503-986-4734