Report identifies antimicrobial-resistant pathogens impacting animal health

Published on August 20, 2020
two hands with microscope

A new report on antimicrobial-resistant pathogens and their impact on animal health is now available for AVMA members to download. The report, Antimicrobial-resistant pathogens affecting animal health in the U.S., will be released publicly next week, and will serve as a resource to assist veterinary teams, producers, breeders, and animal owners with antimicrobial stewardship.

The AVMA worked with microbiologists, epidemiologists, and species experts to put together the report, which identifies bacteria affecting multiple animal species for which there is evidence of resistance to available antimicrobials.

The report consists of three sections:

  • An overview of the impact of antimicrobial resistance on animal health in the U.S.—This describes what can be done to combat the growing threat and identifies resources available from the AVMA to support antimicrobial stewardship.
  • Host species-specific summaries of pathogens of concern—These identify bacteria of particular risk, how to manage infections caused by them in the context of good stewardship, and their overall implications for animal health and welfare.
  • A technical appendix—This contains detailed information, supporting data, and key references identified by members of the expert technical committees that authored the report.

The contents of the new report are limited to bacteria that cause infections in animals and antimicrobials that are FDA-approved for therapeutic use (prevention, control, and treatment) to manage those infections. Existing and emerging resistance of viruses, fungi, or parasites to antimicrobial agents are beyond the report’s scope.

Sharable materials support continued stewardship

In addition to the full report, members can download a variety of sharable materials extracted from the larger document. These can support stewardship efforts by veterinary practices, producers, breeders, and others. They include:

  • An antimicrobial stewardship poster
  • A table of antimicrobial-resistant pathogens
  • Species-specific “report cards” with information about antimicrobial-resistant bacteria affecting dogs and cats, horses, cattle, swine, sheep and goats, chickens and turkeys, and fish and shrimp

All of the materials are available at

Download full report

Antimicrobial resistance: A global One Health issue

Maintaining the effectiveness of antimicrobials approved for therapeutic use in animals requires attention to stewardship across the One Health spectrum, especially among leaders in veterinary medicine, animal production, and public health. Veterinarians are leaders in preserving antimicrobial effectiveness. The new report includes actions that veterinary teams, producers, breeders, and others seeking medical care for animals can take to collaboratively combat antimicrobial resistance.


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