Animals housed in the same primary enclosure or confined to an exercise area shall be maintained in compatible groups, with the following additional restrictions:

(1)           Females in season (estrus) shall not be housed in the same primary enclosure or exercise area with intact or neutered males, except for planned breeding purposes. Breeding shall not be allowed in animal shelters.

(2)           In boarding kennels, animals of different owners shall not have contact with other animals, unless written permission is obtained from the animal's owner. The documentation of this written permission shall be kept as part of the animal's record for one year and must be renewed yearly thereafter.

(3)           Any dog or cat exhibiting an aggressive disposition shall be housed individually in a primary enclosure. Housing of aggressive animals shall be such that the animals are prevented from biting or injuring another animal or human.

(4)           Puppies or kittens less than six months of age shall not be housed in the same primary enclosure with adult dogs or cats other than their dams, except when permanently maintained in breeding colonies, or if requested in writing, by the animals' owner, as in a boarding kennel. Puppies or kittens between four and 16 weeks of age shall have daily access to human social interaction in addition to the human interaction during the cleaning and sanitation of the enclosures, excluding animals which pose a danger to humans or other animals.

(5)           Dogs shall not be housed in the same primary enclosure or exercise areas with cats, nor shall dogs or cats be housed in the same primary enclosure or exercise areas with any other species of animals. Exceptions are allowed at boarding kennels, if requested in writing by the animals' owner.

(6)           All facilities shall designate an isolation area for animals being treated or observed for communicable diseases. Dogs or cats in isolation that are being treated for a communicable disease shall be separated from other dogs or cats and other susceptible species of animals in such a manner as to minimize dissemination of such disease. A sign shall be posted at the cage or isolation area when in use, giving notice of a communicable disease, including the identification of the disease. Accessories, cleaning equipment and supplies used in isolation areas shall not be used in other areas of the facility.

(7)           Animals in long term care must be provided with human interaction other than interaction for enclosure cleaning, same species social interaction, opportunity for play and exercise, and environmental enrichment daily. The provision of these daily interactions and enrichment shall be adequate for the animal's species, age, size and behavior needs. In addition:

(a)           The provision of the daily social interactions and enrichment shall be documented in the animal's records and the records maintained for three years; and

(b)           Exemptions from these long-term care provisions are allowed only for safety or health reasons and must be approved by a veterinarian. This exemption must be reviewed and renewed every 30 days if the continuation is necessary. Documentation of the exemption must include the reason for the exemption, the name and contact information of the veterinarian authorizing the exemption, the original exemption date and the dates of review and renewal and alternative(s) offered if any.

(8)           All animals shall be confined in primary enclosures or exercise areas. Primary enclosures and exercise areas shall be inspected by the Animal Welfare Section and in compliance with the rules of this Subchapter before an animal can be confined in the enclosure or area.


History Note:        Authority G.S. 19A-24;

Eff. April 1, 1984;

Amended Eff. January 1, 2005;

Readopted Eff. September 1, 2022.