Antiobiotic Prescribing For Livestock
—Starting June 11 of this year, all currently available over-the-
counter antibiotics for livestock will only be available as prescription medications.
The Food and Drug Administration’s regulation is intended to provide more veterinary
oversight. Similar to the FDA’s Veterinary Feed Directive, placing antibiotics under the
supervision of veterinarians should result in more judicious use and less antibiotic resistance.
University of Minnesota Extension educator and veterinarian Dr. Joe Armstrong offered more
details on the measure.
Which antibiotics will no longer be over-the-counter starting June 11?
All currently available over-the-counter antibiotics will only be available as prescription
medications starting June 11, 2023. This includes but is not limited to the following:
● Sulfa antibiotics
● Mastitis tubes
Which medications will remain over-the-counter after June 11?
Some medications are not considered crucial for human medicine and will remain over-the-
counter. This includes the following:
● Ionophores, i.e., Rumensin, Bovatec
● Parasiticides, i.e., Ivermectin
● Oral pre/pro/postbiotics
● Topical non-antibiotic treatments
Which livestock species will be affected by this rule change?
This new rule will impact all livestock species.
Why are over-the-counter antibiotics moving to prescription only?
Over-the-counter antibiotics are moving to prescription only to provide more veterinary oversight.
Similar to the Veterinary Feed Directive, placing antibiotics under the supervision of veterinarians
should result in more judicious use and less antibiotic resistance.
What do you need before you can get a prescription from a veterinarian?
Livestock producers must have a valid Veterinary-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) in place
before they can be prescribed antibiotics by a veterinarian.