Here you will find information that is intended to support practices in discussing and drawing up practice guidelines on responsible antibacterial use.

Antibacterial resistance is a politically important topic and there are those who wish to restrict veterinary use of certain antibacterial products, which could have significant implications for animal health and welfare. It is therefore essential that veterinary surgeons are seen to be using antibacterials responsibly.

Further information on the responsible use of antibacterials can be found here:

The PROTECT posters and other supporting material are freely available to download from this page. Single printed copies of the posters are available to individuals free of charge on request; organisations wishing to purchase multiple copies should contact us with details of their requirements. Please contact for further information.


1. Introduction – Protecting antibacterials
    a) Antimicrobial resistance – a public health issue
    b) Critically important antibacterials
    c) Control of antibacterial drugs
    d) EU Action Plan

2. Antibacterial use in companion animals
    a) Companion animals and human health
    b) Antibacterial resistance in companion animals

3. Antibacterial resistance
    a) Inherent resistance
    b) Chromosomal resistance
    c) Plasmid-mediated resistance

4. Responsible use of antibacterials
    a) Rational combinations
    b) Reducing antibacterial resistance
    c) Rational antibacterial selection
       i) Individual animal factors
       ii) Severity of infection
       iii) Causal organism
       iv) Spectrum of activity
       v) Site of infection

    a) Practice Policy
    b) Reducing prophylaxis
       i) Surgical prophylaxis
      ii) Immune compromised patients
    c) Other options
    d) Types of bacteria and drugs
       i) Types of bacteria      
             Gram positive
             Gram negative      
       ii) Types of antibacterial
             Time dependent
             Concentration dependent

    e) Employing the correct antibacterial (Spectrum of activity)
    f)  Cytology and culture
    g) Treating effectively

6. References and further reading

Supporting material

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