What is Leptospirosis?

Leptospirosis is caused by the bacterium genus Leptospira. It is a disease associated with the uterus and sex organs and can have effects on humans.  If Leptospirosis is suspected, avoid contact between cows and female farm workers.


Transmission of Leptospirosis in cattle is usually through the urine of an infected animal. The organisms gain entry through the membranes of the eyes, nose, mouth and even the skin.

Sheep can also act as carriers of Leptospira.


  • Abortion
  • Still birth or premature calf
  • Milk yield drop
  • fever
  • flabby udder

Prevention and control of transmission of Leptospira can involve:

  • Isolating aborting dams
  • Safely disposing of aborted calves
  • Disposal of contaminated bedding
  • Culling infected animals
  • Vaccination

IML Testing Services

  • Bulk milk antibody ELISA (for dairy herds)
  • Individual cow milk antibody ELISA
  • Individual cow blood antibody ELISA

Individual Milk tests can be performed on one milk sample through to a whole herd test. If you would like to avail of this service please contact our office on 042 96 66660 and we will send kits enabling you to take the required number of samples and submit them to the laboratory for testing.

Bulk tests for Lepto can be done on an ad-hoc or quarterly basis. The bulk samples can be tested on samples held in the IML fridge or by requesting a bulk milk sample kit.

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To order Individual milk tests for Lepto simply ask your milk sampler to fill out a blue form to be included in with you recording samples. Alternatively,  please call customer services to request sampling pots on 042 96 75 353 or email enquiries@imlabs.ie.

To order a Lepto bulk milk test please call the IML office along with your Milk Buyer ID on 042 96 75 353 or email enquiries@imlabs.ie

To order a blood test just ask your vet to take a blood sample and submit it to the IML laboratories.


Results are available through normal notification methods. These include post, fax, email or online via the milk quality monitor on Herd Companion.


For ad hoc SCC or constituent testing contact IML