Read this before you buy spring chicks, plus the CDC dropped some new flyers on raw pet food

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board of animal health

Animal Bytes

February 2023

Do high egg prices have you considering a backyard chicken or two this spring?


Spring is a popular time of year to find baby poultry at local feed and supply stores, and available online for home delivery. Whether you are already a seasoned backyard flock owner adding some new chicks this spring, or you are just getting into the hobby, there's plenty to learn about biosecurity. Biosecurity is the process for protecting animals from infectious diseases. The good news is biosecurity can be used to protect a wide variety of species, including birds. If you're looking to keep your laying hens healthy, or your ducks and geese, these easy biosecurity steps can work for your flock.

Looking for a few more simple steps? Check out this one-page flyer we developed with the University of Minnesota Extension. There's a preview of the flyer below.

Biosecurity example

Keep reading...

Meet the Team: Addie Evans Engelke

This month we launched another video in our "Meet the Team" series. Get to know Addie, our farmed cervid program lead. She used to work in wildlife rescue and has experience with a variety of species.

Learn about Addie's background in this short video.

New resources from the CDC on the risks of raw pet food

Raw pet food contains animal protein that hasn't been cooked or heated to a high enough temperature to kill all germs. While some pet food and treat companies use irradiation, high pressure processing, dehydrating or freeze drying to package raw products, there's no guarantee they've eliminated dangerous germs.

Here's a quick list of common ingredients you'll find in raw pet foods and treats:

  • Uncooked muscle meat.
  • Uncooked organ meat.
  • Uncooked bones.
  • Uncooked eggs.
  • Unpasteurized milk.

Want to learn more? Access the full size version of the CDC's new raw pet food poster.Pet Food Safety PDF Cover

We're hiring!

The Board is hiring an Emergency Disease Response Coordinator.

This position is responsible for administering emergency response programs in response to animal disease outbreaks in Minnesota. Responsibilities include:

  • Responding to animal disease outbreaks by coordinating staff to
    respond to disease outbreaks.
  • Coordinating with federal regulatory partners regarding incident response.
  • Managing containment of disease efforts.
  • Producing program summaries and analyzing response data for trends and improvements.

Additional details and summary of salary, benefits and qualifications are outlined in the job posting. Visit the State of Minnesota Careers website and enter "62812" in the search to find the posting and apply. (If the above direct link doesn't work, visit and click "search open positions" to access it.)

Quarterly Board meeting recording available

The Board's first quarterly meeting of 2023 was held on Wednesday, February 8 in St. Cloud. View the online recording of the meeting and read about our Board on our website.