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Todd Janzen: Indiana’s Animal Care Health Standards

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Todd Janzen, Attorney at Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP
Todd Janzen, Attorney at Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP

Farmers I work with take animal husbandry seriously.  Animal care is at the core of what they do.  You can tell that these farmers take pride in the health of their herds, show off prized cattle at county fairs, and do everything they can to provide a safe living environment.  Still, many people who lack this understanding raise concerns about current farming practices.  To address these issues, the Indiana Board of Animal Health has adopted animal care standards for Indiana’s livestock and poultry farmers.

 

The new standards require that animals be given access to adequate food, water, shelter, and veterinary care:

 

Food and Water:  A person responsible for caring for livestock or poultry must provide the animals access to food and water that can reasonably be expected to maintain the health of animals of that species, breed, sex, and age, raised using the applicable production method.

 

Shelter:  A person responsible for caring for livestock or poultry must provide the animals access to sufficient shelter from the weather when it can reasonably be expected to be necessary to maintain the health of animals of that species, breed, sex, and age, raised using the applicable production method.

 

Veterinary Care:  A person responsible for caring for livestock or poultry must take reasonable measures to protect the animals from an injury or disease that can reasonably be expected to seriously endanger the life or health of animals of that species, breed, sex, and age, raised using the applicable production method.

 

A person responsible for caring for livestock or poultry with an injury or disease that seriously endangers the life or health of the animal must either:

1) Provide treatment that can reasonably be expected to be sufficient for animals of that species, breed, sex, and age, raised using the applicable production method; or

2) Euthanize the animal.

 

There are also standards for transportation of animals, requiring reasonable methods be used to avoid injuries during transport.  Each of these standards specifies that species, breed, sex, and age be taken into account, since caring for swine is not the same as caring for poultry.  The standards can be found at the Board of Animal Health’s website.

 

Todd Janzen grew up on a Kansas farm and now practices law with Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP, which has offices in Indianapolis and South Bend.  He also serves as General Counsel to the Indiana Dairy Producers and writes regularly about agricultural law topics on his blog: JanzenAgLaw.com.  This article is provided for informational purposes only. Readers should consult legal counsel for advice applicable to specific circumstances.

Submitted by: Todd J. Janzen, Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP