Do I Have to Tag My Animals to Transport Them?

— Written By and last updated by Cathy Sprinkle

So many rumors are flying about concerning Animal ID, Traceability and Transporting Livestock. Let me see if I can clear up a few things or at least make them less cloudy.

Pigs MUST have an OFFICIAL identification in order to be transported on public highways. You must get the tag from the NCDA&CS Veterinarian Division. This rule began in October  2012. If you or someone you know needs to transport a pig to sell, slaughter or just to move it to another place, contact me so for information on obtaining the proper identification.

Cattle rules are more complicated and a few things are still being worked out. The cattle traceability rule takes effect on March 11, 2013. At first it will affect a relatively small number of cattle producers but that could change. It mostly addresses cattle over 18 months of age being transported across state lines. FOR NOW cattle under 18 months of age, or transported to slaughter, or transported in state PROBABLLY do not fall under the new rules. Cattle over 18 months and/or used for shows, rodeos and other exhibitions will require the official identification. After this program is in place, it will be reviewed and further traceability standards might be considered. For more information go to www.aphis.usda.gov/tracability.