N.Y. Agriculture & Markets Law Section 423
Recordkeeping and protocols


Each animal shelter shall examine an animal upon intake for unique identifiers and any other form of identification that may allow for reunification with an owner, as prescribed in sections one hundred seventeen and three hundred eighty-two of this chapter.


Each animal shelter shall create and maintain a record for each animal in their custody or possession which shall minimally include:


Unique identifiers and any other identification associated with the animal upon examination at entry, including but not limited to a tattoo, a permanent official identification number as prescribed in § 112 (Change of ownership)section one hundred twelve of this chapter or other identification tags, rabies tags and numbers, or a microchip number, if present;


The name, address and telephone number of the person surrendering an animal or from whom an animal is seized, and additional contact information as the commissioner may require, or the address or cross-streets and city, town, or village where the animal was located or found prior to intake, if known;


The date of intake into and departure from the animal shelter;


Whether the animal was adopted, transferred, redeemed by its owner, died or was humanely euthanized, and, if applicable, the name, address, and phone number of the receiving individual or agency;


Basic descriptors including species, age, gender, physical description including color, and the spay or neuter status at entry if determinable with reasonable certainty;


Any available behavioral or health history or information otherwise obtained at intake, including bite history and rabies vaccination status, when known; and


All veterinary and behavioral examinations, treatments, procedures, or medications occurring during the animal’s time under the care of the shelter.


Notwithstanding any other provision of law or regulation to the contrary, records for each animal shall be maintained for not less than three years from the date of animal departure.


Previous bite history shall be fully disclosed in writing to an adopter, transfer partner, or reclaiming owner and provided in any reports regarding the animal, as applicable.


Nothing in this section shall preclude or otherwise supersede record disclosure requirements prescribed in section sixty-seven hundred fourteen of the education law, or any requirement regarding the creation, maintenance, or retention of veterinary medical records in state or federal law or veterinary practice guideline.


Each animal shelter shall maintain a record of its designated foster care providers that shall include the written agreement established between such animal shelter and such providers pursuant to § 432 (Foster care provider requirements)section four hundred thirty-two of this article, each provider’s name, address, telephone number, email address if available, types of animals for which the provider is willing to provide care, inspection reports, and current number of animals in the care of a designated foster care provider. Such records shall be updated immediately in the event any contact information for a given foster care provider changes.


Each animal shelter shall maintain summary records of their total annual animal intake and dispositions by species, by source of intake, and by type of disposition. Such records shall be made available to the commissioner upon request. The commissioner shall make such records available to the public upon request pursuant to article six of the public officers law.


Each animal shelter shall develop and maintain written protocols sufficiently detailed to achieve and maintain the standards prescribed in this section. These shall include, but not be limited to, the following:


animal handling;


behavioral assessment;


enrichment and stress reduction;


management of bite/scratch cases; and




Each animal shelter shall also develop and maintain the following written protocols, approved by a duly licensed veterinarian and sufficiently detailed to achieve and maintain the standards prescribed in this article:


nutrition and feeding;


physical examination;


emergency veterinary care;


pain management;




parasite control;


anesthesia and surgery, if performed on-site by the organization;


humane euthanasia; and


outbreak management/control of infectious diseases.


Protocols established by each animal shelter pursuant to this section shall be reviewed annually and updated as necessary by designated administrative and managerial staff. Such protocols shall be made readily accessible to appropriate staff and volunteers. * NB Effective December 15, 2025

Source: Section 423 — Recordkeeping and protocols, https://www.­nysenate.­gov/legislation/laws/AGM/423 (updated Dec. 23, 2022; accessed Dec. 2, 2023).

Dec. 2, 2023

Last modified:
Dec. 23, 2022

§ 423’s source at nysenate​.gov

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