For Consumers

About the Center for Veterinary Medicine

CVM logo which includes farm animals (horse, cow, chicken, dog, cat, pig) of various colors standing together by a fence with birds above and fish below

As seen on the center’s logo, the mission statement for FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) reads: “Protecting Human and Animal Health.” To achieve this broad mission, CVM:

  • Makes sure an animal drug is safe and effective before approving it. The center approves animal drugs for companion (pet) animals, such as dogs, cats, and horses; and for food-producing animals, such as cattle, pigs, and chickens. If the drug is for a food-producing animal, before approving it, the center also makes sure that food products made from treated animals—meat, milk, and eggs—are safe for people to eat;
  • Monitors the safety and effectiveness of animal drugs on the market;
  • Makes sure food for animals—which includes animal feed, pet food, and pet treats—is safe, made under sanitary conditions, and properly labeled;
  • Makes sure a food additive for use in food for animals is safe and effective before approving it;
  • Conducts research that helps FDA ensure the safety of animal drugs, food for animals, and food products made from animals; and
  • Helps make more animal drugs legally available for minor species, such as fish, hamsters, and parrots; and for minor (infrequent and limited) uses in a major species, such as cattle, turkeys, and dogs.

About the Center for Veterinary Medicine (video)

Meet Bernadette Dunham, D.V.M., Ph.D., Director


What CVM Regulates

Frequently Asked Questions

FDA Basics - Animal & Veterinary

Information for Veterinarians


What CVM Does Not Regulate (Common Misconceptions)

  • We do not regulate the practice of veterinary medicine nor do we provide veterinary medical advice. For concerns regarding the health of your pet, please consult a veterinarian.
  • We do not regulate vaccines for animals. Animal vaccines are regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • FDA regulates some flea and tick products for animals while the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates others. If a product is regulated by EPA, it will have an EPA Registration Number (sometimes written as “EPA Reg. No.”) on the label. If a product is regulated by FDA, it will typically have the statement “Approved by FDA” followed by a six-digit New Animal Drug Application (NADA) or Abbreviated New Animal Drug Application (ANADA) number on the label. Please see Safe Use of Flea and Tick Products in Pets.

 

Page Last Updated: 10/24/2014
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