1 National Veterinary Institute, Technical University of Denmark2 University of Copenhagen3 Section for Public sector service and commercial diagnostics, National Veterinary Institute, Technical University of Denmark
The aim was to identify risk factors associated with Coxiella burnetii antibody positivity in bulk tank milk (BTM) samples from 100 randomly selected Danish dairy cattle herds. Antibody levels were measured by an enzyme-linked immuno-sorbent assay. Before testing the herds, the farm managers were interviewed about hired labour, biosecurity, housing and herd health during the 12 months prior to the study. Variables considered important for C. burnetii antibody positivity in multivariable logistic regression analysis included the sharing of machines between farms (OR = 3.6), human contacts (OR = 4.2), artificial insemination by other people than artificial insemination technicians (OR = 7.7), routine herd health contract with the veterinarian (OR = 4.3) and hygiene precautions taken by veterinarians (OR = 5). In addition, herd size, hired labour, trading of cattle between farms, quarantine and use of calving and disease pens also showed significant association in univariable analysis. This study demonstrates that strict biosecurity is important for the prevention of infections with C. burnetii.