As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:
(1) "Animal" or "animals" means all domestic animals including, but not limited to, cattle, bison, all equidae, sheep, goats, swine, dogs, cats, all avian species and all Class III animals as established by § 70-4-403;
(2) "Commissioner" means the Tennessee commissioner of agriculture;
(3) "Department" means the Tennessee department of agriculture;
(4) "Disease" means any communicable disease deemed appropriate for regulatory control measures by the state veterinarian;
(5) "Person" means an individual, corporation, partnership and any association of two (2) or more persons having a joint or common interest; and
(6) "USDA" means the United States department of agriculture.
44-2-102 Supervisory powers.
The commissioner and the state veterinarian shall have the general supervision of all animals within or that may be in transit through the state, and they are empowered to:
(1) Establish a quarantine against any animal or animals within or entering the state;
(2) Enter any premises in which animals are likely kept for the purpose of examining, inspecting or testing for the purpose of disease control;
(3) Prohibit or regulate the importation of animals into this state whenever it is necessary to protect the health of animals in Tennessee;
(4) Order tests or vaccinations of animals within the state or imported into the state for the purpose of protecting the health of animals in Tennessee;
(5) Order the destruction and sanitary disposition of any animal, whenever, in the opinion of the state veterinarian, the interests of the state are best served by the destruction of such animal. Such destruction may be ordered only for control of any animal disease for which the state has a control program, or for any animal disease not known to exist in the United States;
(6) Order the sanitary disposition of any dead animal. The owner of such animal shall be liable for its disposition;
(7) Stop and inspect or examine vehicles likely to be hauling animals for the purposes of disease control and determining compliance with this chapter;
(8) Order the cleaning and disinfection of any premises, vehicle or equipment for the purpose of animal disease control;
(9) Promulgate in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, all rules and regulations necessary to carry out the provisions of this chapter;
(10) Impose in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, civil penalties of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000) for each violation of the provisions of this chapter or the rules and regulations promulgated under this chapter;
(11) Cooperate with the government of the United States and may designate employees of USDA as agents of the department in carrying out the purposes of this chapter;
(12) Call upon other law enforcement agencies for assistance when the public safety and welfare is threatened; and
(13) File suit in a court of competent jurisdiction for the purpose of enjoining the further violation of the provisions of this chapter.
44-2-103 Prohibited acts.
It is unlawful for any person to:
(1) Willfully hinder, obstruct, disregard or evade any quarantine or order the commissioner or state veterinarian may issue under the provisions of this chapter;
(2) Distribute, sell or use any veterinary vaccine, antiserum, or diagnostic antigen or other veterinary biologic products unless licensed by the USDA and permitted by the department;
(3) Refuse to allow the commissioner or the state veterinarian or any person acting under their authority to inspect or examine any animal reported or suspected to be infected with any communicable disease, or for the owner of such animals to fail to present them for testing or to fail to render reasonable assistance in testing of such animals;
(4) Knowingly sell, trade or import into this state any animal or animals infected with a communicable disease; or
(5) Violate any rule or regulation promulgated pursuant to this chapter.
A violation of this chapter is a Class A misdemeanor.
44-2-105 Indemnity for destroyed animals.
The commissioner through rules and regulations may establish procedures for the payment of indemnities for animals destroyed under authority of this chapter. Indemnity under this section is not intended to be a full reimbursement but a partial compensation based on, but not limited to, the value of the animal and the availability of funds for that purpose. Indemnification may be disallowed in cases where the owner is in violation of this chapter.
44-2-106 Federally accredited veterinarians -- Inspections, vaccinations and tests.
Veterinarians accredited under the provisions of Title 9 of the Code of Federal Regulations and licensed by the state board of veterinary medical examiners may be authorized to make necessary inspections, vaccinations, and tests required by this chapter or its regulations.
44-11-107 Sale of livestock -- Regulations governing -- Inspection -- Diseased
(a) Each community sale shall be under the direct supervision of a representative of the department. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, no livestock known to be infected with or known to have been exposed to any contagious, infectious or communicable animal disease or infestation shall be consigned to or sold through any community sale. The representative shall inspect all livestock that is offered for sale and shall prohibit the movement of any animals which in the representative's opinion are diseased or which are likely to be carriers of disease, until final inspection is made by a qualified, accredited veterinarian, as to their condition. If, upon such examination, an infectious, contagious or communicable disease or infestation is found, such animals may be sold only for immediate slaughter to a recognized slaughterer where veterinary inspection is maintained; or, the owner may, upon submission of an affidavit of ownership for at least sixty (60) days prior to sale date, return them to the original premises, where a strict quarantine must be maintained. The representative shall also issue or cause to be issued all necessary quarantines for such animals as are sold for immediate slaughter or are returned to the original premises. A copy of the quarantine shall be sent to the state veterinarian immediately following issuance, and instructions given the owner that the truck moving the quarantined animals to slaughter or returning them to the original premises must be cleaned and disinfected before being used again to transport livestock. The representative shall supervise the cleaning and disinfecting of the yards and pens at such time as may be necessary, using only those disinfectants approved by the animal disease eradication branch of the agricultural research service of the United States department of agriculture.
(b) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, no female cattle or bulls more than eight (8) months of age shall be removed from the premises where the community sale is conducted, except for immediate slaughter within ten (10) days, unless such cattle either:
(1) Have been tested for brucellosis and found negative within thirty (30) days prior to date of sale, and are accompanied by a certificate of health showing the results of such test;
(2) Are under thirty (30) months of age and were officially vaccinated against brucellosis with vaccine approved by the commissioner at not less than four (4) months nor more than eight (8) months of age, are positively identified and are accompanied by an official certificate of vaccination or have the official calfhood vaccination tattoo in the ear; or
(3) Are in a certified brucellosis-free herd at the time of the sale, and are accompanied by an official certificate of health so certifying.
Cattle that do not come within the above classifications must be tested and found negative to a brucellosis test before being released from the community sale yard. The owner may, upon submission of an affidavit of ownership for at least sixty (60) days prior to sale date, return the cattle to the original premises, and the entire herd placed under quarantine until tested for brucellosis.
(c) All female cattle are classed as breeding cattle, and as such must comply with the requirements governing breeding cattle.
(d) Community sales handling livestock during inclement weather shall be equipped with facilities for housing the livestock during such inclement weather. If livestock is held on the premises for more than ten (10) hours, then facilities for feeding and watering the livestock so held shall be provided.
(e) In case any community sale shall sell livestock by weight, the scales upon which such livestock is weighed shall be regularly inspected and tested.
Reviewed by AAHS in January 2002.
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