Delaware Department of

Poultry & Animal Health

July 12, 2023: Under 3 DE Admin. Code 906, Possession, Sale, or Exhibition of Non-Native and Invasive Animal Species, anyone owning an exotic animal species, determined to be invasive species based on the potential of the animal species to become feral, is required to submit an Invasive Animal Permit Application through the Delaware Department of Agriculture before the date of public notice (August 12, 2023). Once the public notice is made, the Department will not issue a permit to possess, breed, sell, or exhibit an animal that is determined to be invasive.

Anyone who owns a potbellied pig, or any pig breed advertised as micro pigs, teacup pigs, mini pigs, pocket pigs, or pygmy pigs, or a potbelly cross is required to apply for an Invasive Animal Permit. Each individual animal requires a separate permit.
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Our Mission

A happy and healthy hen foraging in an enclosed backyardThe Poultry and Animal Health Section of the Delaware Department of Agriculture is committed to protecting the health and welfare of the domestic animal and avian species from introducing and spreading infectious and contagious diseases, including those transmissible to the human population.

ATTENTION! If you have an animal complaint or issue, please refer to our Contact Us Page to determine who you should contact for assistance.

If you are a backyard flock owner and have not registered your flock, complete the Poultry Registration Form English / Spanish


What We Do

The Poultry and Animal Health Section is responsible for being completely familiar with the diseases of all classes of animals — livestock and exotic, as well as commercial poultry and exotic birds. This applies not only to the local situation but regionally and nationally as well. If there is a serious disease in another state or section of the country, the State Veterinarian may place importation restrictions or an embargo on the affected species in an attempt to prevent the introduction of the disease into this state until an epidemiological situation report is made available.

This section is charged with preventing the introduction and spread of contagious and infectious diseases into and within the animal and poultry population of the state. We maintain a diagnostic laboratory and cooperate with the poultry diagnostic laboratory system of the University of Delaware. Our personnel responds to reports of actual or potential disease problems from veterinarians and livestock and poultry owners. Our personnel visits farms, dairies, livestock auctions, and other premises with animals to collect biological specimens for analysis and diagnosis of disease. When serious, highly contagious diseases are diagnosed, the State Veterinarian, through the authority of the Secretary of Agriculture, may quarantine the animal, herd, or flock to prevent the spread of disease to other premises.



  • Stray Livestock
  • Welfare Concern Regarding Livestock and Poultry
  • Rabies
  • Emergency Animal Disease Hotline (After hours) 302-233-1480

Species Specific Information

Non-poultry birds

Captive cervids

Other (camelid, ratite, aquaculture)

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