COVID-19 response

To date, there have been no reports of livestock being infected by COVID-19 anywhere. However, livestock producers should follow normal biosecurity measures as always. This includes limiting visitors or workers who may have travelled to – or been in contact with someone from – an affected area.

For updates on COVID-19 and on-farm disease prevention, see Biosecurity and livestock – Resources: COVID-19.

See also: COVID-19 info for Albertans.

Overview

Having strong animal health policy and practices is important to Alberta's livestock and other animals. It's also important to public health, Alberta's environment and the agriculture industry.

Alberta’s Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian (OCPV) provides scientific and veterinary leadership in developing animal health policy, and works to prevent and respond to animal health concerns.

The OCPV focuses on:

  • animal disease prevention and control activities
  • overseeing administration of Alberta's Animal Health Act
  • providing advice and recommendations on related animal health topics

Responsibilities

A key part of the OCPV's work is on collaboration and joint response. This includes:

  • working closely with other provinces, levels of government, and industry on various food animal health topics including reportable and notifiable diseases
  • working with Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services on a number of topics that are important to both animal and public health, such as rabies and Salmonella
  • collaborating with Alberta Environment and Parks' Fish and Wildlife Division on animal health topics and disease responses that affect both livestock and wildlife – these include chronic wasting disease, tuberculosis, brucellosis and avian influenza

Current issues

Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea (PED) confirmed in Alberta by Alberta Agriculture and Forestry

Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea (PED) is a highly contagious, viral disease of pigs. It had not been detected in Alberta prior to 2019, a year in which 4 cases were detected and responded to. PED causes severe diarrhea and death in suckling pigs and milder diarrhea in older pigs. Any sudden onset of unusual diarrhea should be investigated immediately by a veterinarian.

  • Portrait shot of Doctor Keith Lehman

    Dr. Keith Lehman, Chief Provincial Veterinarian

    Dr. Lehman has been in the role of Chief Provincial Veterinarian since July 2016.

    Born and raised in Alberta’s Vegreville area, Dr. Keith Lehman graduated from the University of Alberta with a BSc in Agriculture in 1994 and from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan in 1999. Dr. Lehman has worked in private mixed animal practice and at both the federal and provincial levels of government.

Contact

Connect with the Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-427-3448
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
After business hours: 1-800-524-0051
Fax: 780-415-0810

Address:
O.S. Longman Building
6909 116 Street
Edmonton, Alberta  T6H 4P2