Veterinary Compliance Assistance


Carcass Disposal State Regulations


Depending on circumstances, large animal carcass disposal may be regulated by a state's solid waste, medical waste, agriculture, or emergency management regulations. If your state does not provide specific guidance or regulations relating to large animal carcass disposal, check with your local health department, or city/county laws and ordinances.

In addition, during emergency situations and disasters (e.g., blizzards, floods, hurricanes, mass die-offs, etc.), consult with your local emergency officials, your state emergency planning agency, or the state veterinarian, to determine approved methods of carcass disposal.

Applicable Agencies and Regulations for Massachusetts

Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, Division of Animal Health

Address: 251 Causeway St., Boston, MA 02114

Contact Information:

Rules and Regulations: Legal Statutes MGL Chapter 129: Livestock Disease Control. Nothing in statutes on general mortality, only for disease control. Says all animals with foot and mouth disease (or exposure) must be buried or otherwise disposed of.

More Information

Avian Flu and Other Carcass Management Planning (Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, 2007). PowerPoint of DEP plans working with the Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR), Department of Fisheries and Wildlife (DFW) and Department of Public Health (DPH) to determine roles and responsibilities and protocol for avian flu and other carcass management

The Cornell Waste Management Institute (CWMI) maintains a database of carcass disposal state regulations promulgated by state environmental, agricultural and other agencies. There may be additional information on this site, not found on VetCA, that can be helpful to veterinarians, ranchers and farmers. Click here to access the CWMI information for Massachusetts.

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