The Board of Animal Health, established by the legislature in 1903 as the State Livestock Sanitary Board (Laws 1903 Chap. 352), protects the health of domestic animals in the state through administration of laws, rules, and regulations related to animal disease control, including diseases transmittable to man and those contagious only to livestock. Early disease concerns included tuberculosis in cattle and swine, glanders in horses, sheep scabies, hog cholera, and rabies. Brucellosis became a concern in the 1920s. Prior to 1903, the board's functions were performed by the Department of Health.
The Board's name changed to the Board of Animal Health in 1980 (Minn Laws 1980 Chap. 467).