02 NCAC 52J .0210          VETERINARY CARE

(a)  A written program of veterinary care ('PVC') to include disease control and prevention, vaccination, euthanasia (animal shelters only), disposition of diseased, ill, injured, infirm or deformed animals, and provision of adequate routine and emergency veterinary care shall be established with the assistance of a licensed veterinarian by any person who is required to be licensed or registered under the Animal Welfare Act, Article 3 of Chapter 19A of the General Statutes. The following is required of each PVC:

(1)           The PVC for animal shelters and pet stores shall be established with the assistance of a veterinarian and the veterinarian's information and signature shall be included in the appropriate section of the license/registration application/renewal application;

(2)           The PVC for boarding kennels shall be submitted as part of the license/registration application/renewal and must be approved by the Animal Welfare Section Inspector assigned to the facility;

(3)           The facility shall implement and follow the PVC; and

(4)           Changes to the PVC shall be submitted for approval to the Animal Welfare Section within 10 days of the effective date.

(b)  If there is an infectious disease outbreak that persists for more than seven days at the facility, the facility operator shall consult with a veterinarian for procedures to mitigate the problem. This consultation shall be documented by the facility.

(c)  If there is a disease problem that persists for more than 30 days at the facility, the facility operator shall obtain and follow a veterinarian's written recommendations for correcting the problem. These recommendations shall include, at a minimum: sanitation of primary enclosures, common areas, exercise areas and accessories, and protocols for animal intake, evaluation, isolation, disease recognition and treatment and euthanasia (in animal shelters).

(d)  Each dog and cat shall be observed daily by the animal caretaker who has been adequately trained or is experienced in animal care or is under the direct supervision of a person who has such training or experience. Sick or diseased, injured, lame, or blind dogs or cats shall be provided with adequate veterinary care in a timely manner or be euthanized, provided that the euthanasia shall not affect compliance with any state or local law requiring the holding, for a specified period, of animals suspected of being diseased. If an animal cannot be euthanized due to a required holding period and does not meet the criteria of G.S. 19A-32.1(b)(2), then adequate veterinary care shall be provided to the animal.

(e)  A certified facility shall maintain a list of authorized personnel pursuant to 02 NCAC 52J .0402 and shall maintain this list in the Policy and Procedure Manual pursuant to 02 NCAC 52J .0800.

(f)  Diseased, injured, infirm or deformed animals shall be sold or adopted only under the policy set forth in the PVC.

(g)  Full written disclosure of the medical condition of the animal and all veterinary medical treatments provided to the animal shall be provided to the person or organization receiving, adopting, purchasing or otherwise acquiring the animal. Proof of written disclosure signed by the person or organization receiving the animal shall be maintained as part of the animal's record.

(h)  All animals in a licensed or registered facility shall be in compliance with the North Carolina rabies law, G.S. 130A, Article 6, Part 6. This subsection shall not apply to animals which have been in the facility less than 15 days.

(i)  If surgical procedures are performed at the registered/licensed facility, the facility shall:

(1)           only perform surgical procedures on animals owned by the facility. The facility shall not perform surgery on animals owned by the public unless the practice of veterinary medicine at that facility falls under the jurisdiction of the North Carolina Board of Veterinary Medicine;

(2)           appoint a North Carolina ('NC') licensed veterinarian to be the supervising veterinarian to direct, oversee and be responsible for the performance of all surgical procedures and for the condition of the surgical facility;

(3)           ensure all surgical procedures are performed by a NC licensed veterinarian and performed within the designated surgical area;

(4)           ensure that the designated surgical area meets the minimum standards for surgery in 21 NCAC 66 .0207(b)(9), the drug procedures meet the minimum standards in 21 NCAC 66 .0207(b)(11) and the recordkeeping procedures meet the minimum standards in 21 NCAC 66 .0207(b)(12);

(5)           ensure that the minimum standards for after-hours emergency service in 21 NCAC 66 .0207(b)(19) for the provision of after-hours emergency veterinary care for an animal receiving surgical procedure(s) are met; and

(6)           ensure that surgical procedures are not performed until the inspection of the surgical facility and supporting procedures noted in this section has occurred and all deficiencies have been corrected.

(j)  Boarding kennels shall not administer a prescription medication, tranquilizer, sedative, or any pharmaceutical drug designed to calm an animal unless the medication or drug is administered under the direction of or by prescription from the animal's veterinarian, and written permission from the animal's owner. In the event a boarding kennel agrees to administer such medications or substances, the medications shall be in the original container issued by the veterinarian or pharmacy and administered according to label directions. The administration of these medications or substances shall be documented as required by 02 NCAC 52J .0102.

(k)  Nothing in these rules allows the practice of veterinary medicine in North Carolina beyond what is otherwise authorized by the NC Veterinary Medical Board pursuant to the NC Veterinary Practice Act.


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

Eff. April 1, 1984;

Amended Eff. March 23, 2009; January 1, 2005;

Readopted Eff. September 1, 2022.