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Minnesota Agencies

Information on Minnesota State Agencies, Boards, Task Forces, and Commissions

Compiled by the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library

Board of Animal Health

Also known as:
Active dates:1980 -

The mission of the Board of Animal Health is to protect the health of the state's domestic animals. The Board is responsible for carrying out disease control programs for livestock and poultry in Minnesota and overseeing their enforcement.


The Board of Animal Health, established by the legislature in 1903 as the State Livestock Sanitary Board (Laws of Minnesota 1903,  chapter 352), protects the health of domestic animals in the state through administration of laws, rules, and regulations related to animal disease control, including diseases transmittable to man and those contagious only to livestock. Early disease concerns included tuberculosis in cattle and swine, glanders in horses, sheep scabies, hog cholera, and rabies. Brucellosis became a concern in the 1920s. Prior to 1903, the board's functions were performed by the Department of Health.

The Board's name changed to the Board of Animal Health in 1980 (Laws of Minn. 1980, chap. 467).

In 2021, the Legislature changed board membership from five to six members, requiring at least one member to be from a federally recognized Tribe in Minnesota (see Laws of Minn. 2021, chap 28). Language was also added saying the board shall allow the movement of Cervidae from a Cervidae farm located within a chronic wasting disease management or endemic zone if the Cervidae have tested negative for chronic wasting disease with an antemortem test validated by the United States Department of Agriculture and the herd has met other movement requirements as set by the board. Further adjustments to board membership were made in 2023 (see Laws of Minn. 2023, chap. 43, art. 2, sec. 122).


As of 2023, the board consists of seven members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate, three of whom are producers of livestock in the state; one of whom is a member of a federally recognized Tribe located in Minnesota who is experienced in animal husbandry; and three of whom are practicing veterinarians licensed in Minnesota, one of whom specializes in companion animals. To the extent practicable, the governor's appointments must achieve gender and geographic balance among the board membership. 

The Board elects a president and vice-president among its members. Every year, the Board appoints a veterinarian to serve as the state veterinarian and executive director of the Minnesota Board of Animal Health.

Entries for this agency in the Annual Compilation and Statistical Report of Multi-Member Agencies Report: 2023, 2022, 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996, 1995, 1994, 1993, 1992, 1991, 1990, 1989, 1988, 1987, 1986, 1985, 1984, 1983, 1982, 1981, 1980.

Note: This report provides membership details as well as meeting information and a summary of the group's activities.

Note: The Legislative Reference Library may have additional reports on or by this group available through our catalog.
No longer 'interim': Brian Hoefs named state vet. The Farmer, October 2023.
Minnesota picks internal candidate as new state vet. Agweek, 8/14/2023.
Minnesota state vet out after seven months. AgWeek, 4/3/2023.
Changes to Board of Animal Health, cottage food law included in ag bill that passes House, Senate. Session Daily, 5/17/2021.
Bill would change the makeup of state's Board of Animal Health. Outdoor News, 3/3/2021.
Committee to advise Board of Animal Health. Outdoor News, 9/2/2020.
News clippings and documents. Agencies Notebook Collection, 1981-2017.
Record last updated: 10/09/2023

All information on this group from the Library’s collection of agency notebooks has been digitized. These materials are incorporated into the “documents/articles” section of the record. Please contact a librarian with any questions. The Minnesota Agencies database is a work in progress.

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