Commercial Breeders

The Animal Care Program regulates individuals and entities that enter dogs or cats into commerce as defined under state statute. All commercial breeders are inspected at least once a year by animal care inspectors of the ACFA program.

The Animal Care Program is staffed by 15 inspectors located throughout the state that carefully balance their schedule with routine inspections, complaints, inquiries into unlicensed facilities and educating licensees and the public on adequate care for animals. The program is located within the Division of Animal Health, and inspectors must maintain a general knowledge of all animals for other duties that are assigned.

New Legislation in 2011

In 2011, the Missouri General Assembly passed the Canine Cruelty Prevention Act and Gov. Jay Nixon signed it into law. The Act, also known as the Missouri Solution, is the result of an agreement between the Missouri Department of Agriculture, commercial dog breeding and farming interests and Missouri-based animal welfare organizations. It strengthens standards for veterinary care and living conditions for dogs in commercial breeding facilities. The Act also provides new tools for the Missouri Attorney General's Office, including the authority to file criminal charges for "canine cruelty," to seek enhanced criminal penalties for repeat offenders, and to bring civil enforcement actions and seek civil penalties for past violations of the Act.

Current Law



If you have questions about commercial dog breeding or the Animal Care Program, please contact (573) 751-3076.