What does Dr. Leibsle do
“And then I went back to practice dairy and equine in Wisconsin for 5 years and this job came open, I was looking for a change.
When I got here certainly Idaho has become my home. I started a family here and it’s been such a pleasure to expand what the possibilities of what my career could have been. But how I think how I made it out here is I moved to Idaho once and liked it so I though I’d move back. But the Department of Agriculture and the people that are here that make the Dept of Ag and really that support the livestock industry is why I stayed.”
That was back in 2011. Now it’s been almost a year since he became the state veterinarian after the retirement of Dr. Bill Barton in January.
“The job of the state veterinarian, I think, is very broad, and it really can change on a regular basis. But in large part, the livestock industry, to be able to grow and sell your livestock to maintain a food supply is a big part of this job. And disease surveillance; so having regular testing for brucellosis, tuberculosis, any type of the follow up that goes along with animals that are flagged as suspect is done through regulatory veterinarians such as myself. And in addition to the dairy programs, the inspections, the sanitation of the dairy industry and the inspections that go along with those is in large part just trying to make sure the various industries that are generated through owning a livestock business are safe, viable, can participate in interstate commerce. A lot of my job involves outreach and education, but a portion of my job is also regulation. So we have to hold people or businesses accountable to the rules, but for the most part we try to do our best to educate people to follow the rules rather than having to admonish them for not following them on the back end,” said Leibsle.
Dairy and beef are Idaho’s largest agricultural industries. Idaho dairy alone is a two billion dollar a year business, and Idaho ranks third among U.S. states for dairy production.
That’s a lot of animals to test for disease and keep track of, so three years ago they transitioned from a paper system that used the mail, to an electronic Animal Disease Traceability Program.
“So this is the portal that the practicing veterinarians will log into and submit all of their regulatory documents,” said Leibsle.