Zoonotic Disease Prevention

Zoonotic Disease Prevention Resources

PIJAC is instrumental in protecting the health and safety of pets and pet owners. We proactively address these issues by developing Best Management Practices for animal care. In addition, PIJAC works collaboratively with governmental and non-governmental committees on ways to prevent zoonotic diseases (the transfer of disease from animals to humans) and distributes health alerts when an outbreak does occur.

Resources on this page: 


PIJAC Zoonosis Committee

PIJAC has long recognized the importance of preventing the transmission of diseases from pets to people. The Zoonosis Committee consists of experts from different segments of the pet industry, veterinary medicine and public health, assisted by PIJAC staff and consultants.

  • Zoonosis Committee Fact Sheet - This PDF contains an introduction to the Zoonosis Committee, as well as a listing of accomplishments it has achieved over the years.

Recommendations for Antibiotic Stewardship in Companion Animals

The goal of this document is to establish a broad and comprehensive approach to antibiotic stewardship to which everyone in the pet care community should aspire. PIJAC and the members of PIJAC's Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Working Group strongly encourage everyone in the pet care community to follow the recommendations to the extent that it is both applicable and feasible within their given operations.Download here


Pet Industry Health Alerts & Health Updates

PIJAC has partnered with governmental agencies to provide updates or alert the pet industry in the unlikely event of a zoonotic disease outbreak so they can address it quickly and appropriately.

Healthy Herp Handling Poster

A visually appealing presentation of the simple steps pet owners should follow to keep themselves healthy when handling their pets. The poster is perfect for schools who have reptiles or amphibians in the classroom, as well as retailers and pet owners. 

Retailer Resources - Preventing Zoonotic Diseases

The PIJAC Zoonosis Committee has developed a variety of resources and identified additional sources of information for the safe handling of animals in stores.

  • Zoonotic Disease Cross Reference Tool
    A handy resource for retail store associates, this tool includes information on general zoonotic prevention measures along with specific details and links to related flyers and resources.​​
  • National Assoc. of State Public Health Veterinarians Psittacosis Compendium (via nasphv.org)
  • This Compendium provides information about psittacosis and avian chlamydiosis to public health officials, physicians, veterinarians, the pet bird industry, and others concerned with controlling these diseases and protecting public health. The recommendations in this Compendium provide standardized procedures to control avian chlamydiosis in birds, a vital step to protect human health. 
  • Aquarium and Tank Stickers
    Print these stickers and post them on reptile, amphibian and aquatic tanks to educate customers on healthy handling practices.
  • Zoonotic Disease Prevention Flyers
    Post these flyers in your backroom to ensure your employees are practicing healthy handling procedures and preventing the transmission of disease.

Best Management Practices

Partnering with experts in the field, PIJAC has developed several Best Management Practices (BMP) documents for the pet industry.

  • Feeder Rodent BMP (Updated July 2017)
    The Feeder Rodent BMP are applicable to feeder rodent facilities, breeders, and distributors. The BMP deal with general husbandry matters (caging, buildings, sanitation, nutrition, disease prevention), transportation, euthanasia, and the critical issue of timely response to a zoonotic disease outbreak.
  • Reptile & Amphibian Expo BMP (Updated June 2015)
    The Reptile & Amphibian Expo BMP are applicable to show promoters, vendors, and staff while addressing issues surrounding feeder animals, venomous species, and other practices common to reptile and amphibian expos.
  • Tick Interception Protocol (Updated April 2013)
    This document provides necessary information and step-by-step instructions to be followed by those exporting reptiles from other countries and those importing reptiles into the United States to prevent the introduction of Heartwater (a deadly African disease of livestock vectored by certain species of ticks, primarily Amblyomma spp.) and to reduce the entry of exotic invasive ticks that may be introduced into the United States.