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The health of Missouri's livestock is enviable among states. Our stringent animal health regulations and rigorous disease testing help keep Missouri free from costly and threatening livestock diseases. The Animal Health Division, under the direction of the state veterinarian, is responsible for controlling, eradicating and testing for livestock disease in Missouri. This is accomplished through testing, vaccinations and regulatory programs involving cattle, swine, horses, poultry, exotic animals, sheep, goats and small animals as provided under the Diseased Animal Law.

Animal Care Facility Program

Missouri’s Animal Care Facility Program regulates breeders, dealers, boarders, shelters and pet stores to ensure that they meet state standards regarding feed, water, shelter, veterinary care, building maintenance, socialization, identification and recordkeeping requirements.

The Animal Care Facility Program currently has 2,100 total licensees (which includes breeding kennels, boarding kennels, shelters, dealers and pet stores).

Since 2009, animal health officers have taken steps to investigate allegations of unlicensed facilities through the dedication of field staff and public participation in Operation Bark Alert.

The Animal Care Facility Program is staffed by fourteen field staff and two field veterinarians located throughout the state that balance their schedule with routine inspections, investigation of complaints, inquiries into unlicensed facilities and educating licensees and the public on animal husbandry expectations under the animal care program.

Regulatory standards are defined under 2 CSR 30-9.010 through 2 CSR 30-9.030. Animal Care Facility staff meet throughout the year for policy and training sessions to ensure that the regulations are strictly interpreted and fairly and consistently enforced.

For more information on ACFA and its programs, click here Animal Care Facilities Program.

Dead Animal Reporting

The Animal Health Division responds to reports of dead livestock that have not been properly disposed of. Division staff do not dispose of the animals, but do attempt to locate those responsible and see that they properly dispose of the carcasses in a timely manner as required by the Disposal of Dead Animal Law, Chapter 269, RSMo.

The division only investigates animals raised for commercial purposes. We do not respond to reports of dead animals under the Wildlife Code (deer, coyotes, etc.), or pets, whether confined or stray.

There are five (5) acceptable methods for disposal of dead animals. However each has specific requirements and not all are feasible or practical in all cases. The most practical method, in most cases, is on-site burial, which also has certain requirements. Rendering service pickup is only available to livestock markets and large producers. Burning is not acceptable in all cases. Placement in a ditch or waterway is not acceptable.

To report dead livestock not properly disposed of or for further information contact the Division of Animal Health at (573) 751-3377 or e-mail animal.health@mda.mo.gov. Please be prepared to give as much of the following information as possible.

  • What kind of animal(s) and how many?
  • Location of the animal(s).
  • Name, address, telephone number of animal owner or custodian.
  • Name, address, telephone number of landowner.
  • Your name, address and telephone number. The person investigating may need to talk with you for further information.
  • When giving locations, please use road numbers, distances to 1/10th of miles to nearest state road or highway, directions of N, E, S, W, NE, SW, etc. Avoid using landmarks, and “turn right or left,” as they can be confusing depending on which way one is going.

Livestock Brands

Branding is one of the oldest ways to permanently identify livestock. It serves as an excellent safeguard against livestock theft, loss or dispute. In fact, the International Livestock Identification Association considers livestock brands to be as important as return addresses on mail.

Currently, Missouri maintains a list of approximately 5,000 recorded brands. Those brands are available online through Missouri’s Electronic Brand Book or in printed form from the Department’s Animal Health Division. Copies of Brand Books can be purchased for $15.00.

For more information, click here Missouri Livestock Brands

Livestock Import Regulations

Permits are required to import some animals to Missouri. If you have questions about the animals you are importing to Missouri, or need a permit, please call 573-751-3377.

The livestock import permit office can provide specific information on all of the entry requirements for any animal species, Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Central Standard Time.

Check out https://www.interstatelivestock.com/ for import regulations.

Regulations

For further information on requirements, contact the Division of Animal Health at (573) 751-3377.