Protection of animal population from the spread of dangerous infectious diseases is one of the work tasks of the FVS, while monitoring the health and welfare of animals. This task plays an important role in terms of consumer rights protection, as it is aimed at insuring that the diseases which animals are susceptible to, do not have a direct or indirect effect on human health through food.
The specialists of the Veterinary Surveillance Department develop the programmes for the surveillance and monitoring of animal infectious diseases, coordinate the introduction thereof, summarise and analyse the results.
In order to ensure that the specialists and other responsible institutions are ready for action in the case of an especially dangerous animal disease outbreak, the FVS regularly organises training, where the actions of the responsible state institutions and persons in the event of an outbreak are simulated.
The veterinary inspectors are involved in the control of animal holdings, animal transporters, veterinary pharmacies and wholesalers, practising veterinarians and veterinary practices, companies involved in animal feed circulation and other objects subject to monitoring in all the regions of Latvia.
Practising veterinarians play a significant role in the work organisation of the FVS, as the prevention and combating of diseases is not imaginable without them. In order to ensure the performance of certain functions, the service concludes authorisation agreements with practising veterinarians.
It is important to ensure that neither farmers, nor veterinarians are afraid to report a disease, therefore no one is punished for informing, while indifference and the further spread of a disease are punishable. Only when the owner of the animal understands their liability for the health of an animal and manufactured products, will we be able to be certain about the food that we consume daily. We must be sure that the animals, the meat or milk of which is consumed, are healthy, that they have not been treated with illegal drugs - that antibiotics and other medications have not been used without justification. The conditions of keeping and caring for animals affect the product quality as well.
Veterinary surveillance means the control of health and welfare not only regarding the productive animals, but other animals as well, for instance – fur animals, home animals (pets) and circus animals.