FAQ Professionals



1. Providing Veterinary Services

The North Carolina Veterinary Practice Act prohibits an individual from practicing veterinary medicine in this State without first having obtained a license or temporary permit from the Board. The law provides that if an individual practices, or attempts to practice veterinary medicine without being licensed by the NC Board, constitutes a Class-I criminal law misdemeanor.

The penalty for the unauthorized practice of veterinary medicine is set forth in General Statute 90-187.12. Further, such act of unlicensed practice can provide the basis for the Board to file a lawsuit seeking civil injunction against the person(s) in the Superior Court of this State.

NCGS 90-181 Definitions

(6) 'Practice of veterinary medicine' means:

a. To diagnose, treat, correct, change, relieve, or prevent animal disease, deformity, defect, injury, or other physical or mental conditions; including the prescription or administration of any drug, medicine, biologic, apparatus, application, anesthetic, other therapeutic/diagnostic substance or technique on any animal.

2. Veterinary - Client - Patient Relationship (VCPR)

NC General Statute 90-181(7a) defines the VCPR as follows:

a. The veterinarian has assumed the responsibility for making medical judgments regarding the health of the animal and the need for medical treatment, and the client (owner or other caretaker) has agreed to follow the instruction of the veterinarian.

b. There is sufficient knowledge of the animal by the veterinarian to initiate at least a general or preliminary diagnosis of the medical condition of the animal. This means that the veterinarian has recently seen and is personally acquainted with the keeping and care of the animal by virtue of an examination of the animal or by medically appropriate and timely visits to the premises where the animal is kept.

c. The practicing veterinarian is readily available or provides for follow-up in case of adverse reactions or failure of the regimen of therapy.

NCGS 90-187.8 Discipline of licensees

(b) The Board may impose and collect from a licensee a civil monetary penalty of up to five thousand dollars ($5,000) for each violation of this Article or a rule adopted under this Article. The amount of the civil penalty, up to the maximum, shall be determined upon a finding of one or more of the following factors:

(18) Selling, dispensing, prescribing, allowing the sale, dispensing, prescription of biologics, controlled substances, drugs or medicines without a veterinarian-client-patient relationship with respect to the sale, dispensing or prescription.

3. Veterinary Telemedicine

Administrative Rule .0211

4. Qualifications & Procedure for Licensure / Registration in NC for a:

Veterinary License

Veterinary Technician Registration

North Carolina General Statute 90-187 and Administrative Rule .0301 provide information about the qualifications and exam procedures for North Carolina.

Note: North Carolina does NOT accept reciprocity.

5. Temporary Permits - Two (2) Types

Temporary permits allow a qualified applicant to practice veterinary medicine in this state under the supervision of a NC licensed veterinarian for a specific period of time. G.S. 90-187.4

Exam Temporary Permit:
For those scheduled to take the NC State Exam
This permit allows an individual who has applied for the NC State Exam to obtain a certificate to practice veterinary medicine under the supervision of a NC licensed veterinarian while awaiting their scheduled test date.  To apply for a Temporary Permit, you must first apply for the State Exam. If you've already done so, log in to the Licensure Gateway and select the Temporary Permit application for those taking the exam and submit. However, with the new on-line exam process, Exam Temporary Permits are seldom needed.
ATTENTION: The Temporary Permit CANNOT be processed until your exam application and all the required documents for the State Exam have been received.

60-Day Temporary Permit
: For a Non-Resident Veterinarian
Another type of temporary permit is also available to a non-resident veterinarian validly licensed in another state, territory or district of the United States or a foreign country, provided that such temporary permit shall be issued for a period of no more than sixty (60) days. G.S. 90-187.4   For those seeking a 60-Day Temporary Permit, you must first create an account (register) via the Licensure Gateway. Once registered, you will log back in and select the 60-Day Temporary Permit application to submit.

Required documents: Degree conferred transcript, License Verification(s) from state in which you are currently practicing and copy of your Social Security Card. If you are not a US citizen, you may submit a copy of your Passport/SIN in lieu of a Social Security Card.

ATTENTION: Document(s) to be mailed or e-mailed FROM SCHOOL / AGENCY to the Board office. E-mail to Janice@ncvmb.org or mail to: NCVMB, 1611 Jones Franklin Rd., Suite 106, Raleigh, NC 27606

Once your permit has been processed, both you and the PRIMARY supervising veterinarian will receive a confirmation e-mail.

The required documents DO NOT have to be received before submitting the application.

6. Privilege License

General Information: (877) 252-3052
NCDOR, PO Box 25000, Raleigh, NC 27640-0640
  1. 'Privilege License Tax' Information & Application
  2. 'Privilege License Tax' RENEWAL NOTICE: What should I do?

7. Inactive Status: A status you may want to consider if contemplating retirement

A veterinarian or a veterinary technician may elect 'Inactive Status' by submitting an on-line application or letter of request to the Board office. To qualify, you must NOT be practicing veterinary medicine in any state or hold an Active veterinary license or veterinary trechnician registration anywhere. An individual still practicing veterinary medicine, employed where a degree in veterinary medicine is required or preferred, would not be eligible for 'Inactive Status'.

To request this status, log into the Licensure Gateway and click on the business card looking item with the word 'Veterinarian' or 'Veterinary Technician'. This will open another window with multiple options. Select 'Inactivate' and submit your request. Once approved, you will be sent a confirmation e-mail.

The veterinarian or veterinary technician who has an 'Inactive Status' may have their NC license/registration reinstated at any time. The requirements to reinstate are proof of 20 hours of continuing education for a veterinarian and 12 hours of continuing education for veterinary technicians (2 of these hours are required to be on the abuse of controlled substances), renewal fee and submission of an on-line reinstatement application. Licensure Gateway Portal

8. Reinstating your License/Registration

A veterinarian/technician may be reinstated at any time once requirements are met and a "Reinstatement" form is submitted on-line. Please go to our 'License/Registration' page for details.

GS 90-187.9    NCAC .0108    NCAC .0308

9. VETERINARY SPECIALIST Definition - NCVMB Position Statement

Adopted May 2022

The NCVMB considers that "Specialist" indicates a veterinarian or registered veterinary technician who has been awarded and has maintained the status of:

  • Diplomate of a specialty organization recognized by the American Board of Veterinary Specialties of the American Veterinary Medical Association or
  • Specialist by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians or
  • Any other organization approved by the NCVMB

What Are the Position Statements of the Board?
The North Carolina Veterinary Medical Board’s (NCVMB) position statements are interpretive statements that attempt to define or explain the meaning of laws or rules that govern the practice of Veterinarians and Registered Veterinary Technicians in North Carolina. They also are intended to set forth criteria or guidelines used by the Board’s staff in investigations and in the prosecution or settlement of cases.
When considering the Board’s position statements, the following four points should be kept in mind.

  1. In the position statements, the NCVMB attempts to articulate some of the standards it believes applicable to the veterinary medical profession it regulates. However, a position statement should not be seen as the promulgation of a new standard as of the date of issuance or amendment.
  2. The position statements are not intended to be comprehensive or to set out exhaustively every standard that might apply in every circumstance. Therefore, the absence of a position statement or a position statement’s silence on certain matters should not be construed as the lack of an enforceable standard.
  3. The existence of a position statement should not necessarily be taken as an indication of the NCVMB’s enforcement priorities.
  4. A lack of disciplinary actions to enforce a particular standard mentioned in a position statement should not be taken as an abandonment of the principles set forth therein.

The NCVMB will continue to decide each case before it on all the facts and circumstances presented during a disciplinary hearing whether or not the issues have been the subject of a position statement. The NCVMB intends that the position statements will reflect the NCVMB’s philosophy on certain subjects and give licensees some guidance for avoiding NCVMB scrutiny. The principles of professionalism and performance expressed in the position statements apply to all persons licensed and/or registered by the NCVMB to render veterinary medical care at any level.

10. Levels of Supervision

The following were voted on and approved by the Board at the November 2017 meeting:

Immediate Supervision” means that the veterinarian is in the immediate area and within audible and visual range of the patient and the individual treating the patient under the direction of the veterinarian.

Direct Supervision” means the veterinarian is on the premises, has assumed responsibility for the care of the patient, and is readily available to assist the individual treating the patient under the direction of the veterinarian.

Indirect Supervision” means the veterinarian need not be on the premises; has given either written or oral instructions for treatment of the patient; is readily available by telephone or other forms of immediate communication; and has assumed responsibility for the veterinary care given the patient by the individual working under the direction of the veterinarian.

11. On-Line Renewals / Continuing Education

Continuing Education must be earned in the renewal period prior to the pending renewal cycle (prior to licensee's expiration date). Please refer to Administrative Rule .0206 for information about Continuing Education

NOTE: Beginning in 2020, renewals require two (2) hours of CE on the 'abuse of controlled substances'; these 2 hours are included in the total number of CE hours. This includes both veterinarians and technicians.

The renewal window is open November 1st and closes the last day of February. Faculty's renewal window opens May 1st. and closes August 14th. You may access your account year-round to update your CE.

Renewal Status - Veterinary Licenses & Vet Technician Registrations are:
ACTIVE until December 31st
ACTIVE/PENDING January 1st - January 31st
ACTIVE/LATE February 1st - February 28/29th
REVOKED on March 1st

FACULTY Renewal Status - Certificates are:
ACTIVE until June 14th
ACTIVE/PENDING June 15th - July 14th
ACTIVE/LATE July 15th - August 14th
REVOKED on August 15th

Veterinarians: Annually - $170 and 20 CE hours

Veterinary Technicians: Biennially - $50 and 12 CE hours (every 2 years; it is based on the initial year of registration)

Corporations: Annually - $160

NOTE: You are exempt from CE requirements for your FIRST renewal cycle if you meet the following condition: you graduate the same year you became licensed or registered in North Carolina.

12. Request a CE Hardship Extension

Per .0206 (4), an individual may request an extension of time to obtain continuing education. They will need to provide evidence (documentation) of a medical emergency, natural disaster or evidence of other circumstances which constituted a severe and verifiable hardship. The NCVMB required request form* is to be submitted to the Board office for review by December 15th. Some extension requests may require the review of the full Board; that review will take place during the next scheduled Board meeting. Not all requests for extension of time are granted.
*The filling of form fields is not supported; will require opening with differnt viewer.

13. Ownership of Veterinary Practices

Only a North Carolina licensed veterinarian can own and operate a veterinary practice facility and deliver services to the public.

Administrative Code .0201 Welfare groups, humane societies or other entities cannot operate and are not able to own veterinary practice facilities in North Carolina. Any advertising or promotions suggesting that someone or entity owns a veterinary practice other than a North Carolina licensed veterinarian, would be considered in violation of the veterinary Practice Act.

Welfare groups, humane societies or other entities are not authorized by law to engage in the delivery of veterinary medical services to the public.

Please refer to Practice Facilities if interested in owning or purchasing a practice.

14. Minimum Facility and Practice Standards

SECTION .0207 - The minimum standards for all facilities where veterinary medicine is practiced

15. Maintaining / Ownership of Patient Records

Veterinarians must maintain patient records for a period of three (3) years per Administrative Code .0207b(12)(B). These records would include written notations, computerized or digital data, radiographs, communication logs and laboratory reports. The veterinarian or practice to which a request for copies is made should respond within a reasonable time and may charge a reasonable cost relating to time and expense of reproduction of those copies.

Veterinarians are ethically responsible to provide an owner the medical records of a patient.

16. Current Information Required by the Board

It is manditory to ensure your personal and work information is kept current within 60 days of any change. Please refer to .0106

17. Name Change

In order for the Board to change your name in our system you will need to log into the Licensure Gateway to make request. You will be required to upload a copy of the legal document(s) at the time of the request submittal (e.g. Social Security Card, marriage certificate, divorce decree, etc.) reflecting your new name. Change your name SELECT: My Profile | Name Change

In addition, be sure to update your contact information in your online account (e.g. physical and/or e-mail address change, etc.).

18. Prescriptions

In March, 1996, NC Assistant Attorney General, Kip D. Sturgis, contacted the Board as a result of complaints received by the Attorney General's office concerning veterinarians and prescriptions. Mr. Sturgis summarized his office concerns as follows: The first concern is on medically unjustified restraint of competition in the market for veterinary medicine. The second is directed to the ethics of these anticompetitive practices that not only place the veterinarian's commercial interest in direct conflict with the animal's owner, but may also undermine the veterinarian's professional purpose to promote animal health by foreseeably leading some owner to delay or forego veterinary treatment of their animals. The third is relected by complaints both agencies have received and focuses on the damage these practices have on the public's perception of veterinarians' professionalism. Assistant Attorney General K.D. Sturgis' letter

If a veterinarian, based upon his/her medical opinion, is willing to dispense medication, then the veterinarian must also provide a prescription in place of said medication should the owner request a prescription. If a veterinarian, based upon his/her medical opinion, is not willing to dispense medication, then it would also be appropriate to deny a request for a prescription.

Federal legislation has been introduced in both the House and the Senate directly involving veterinary prescriptions. The title of this legislation is the Fairness to Pet Owners Act. The House version is HR 3174. The Senate version is S1200.

19. STOP Act Information per 90-113.74(d)

G. S. 90-106 Prescriptions and Labeling

Opioid Safety STOP Act Crosswalk 12 2017

CDC’s Guidelines of Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain

Veterinarian Dispenser Guide

Gabapentin FAQ for Veterinarian Medicine Prescribers

Controlled Substance Reporting System: Dispensing of controlled substances require reporting to NC DHHS CSRS. You may contact the CSRS Utilization team for questions / concerns at CSRS.Utilization@dhhs.nc.gov.

20. USP 800 - In North Carolina, the enforcement of USP 800 will be through OSHA and/or the NC Board of Pharmacy

Guidance on USP 800 Assessment of Risk and Other Educational Information

Consensus Statement on the Handling of Hazardous Drugs per USP Chapter <800>

An excellent informational piece from Blue Pearl regarding USP 800 and Veterinarians.

21. Use of the term 'Veterinary Technician'

General Statute 90-181(11) reserves the term Veterinary Technician, Registered Veterinary Technician or Technician for a person that has graduated from an AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) accredited program in veterinary technology, is registered with this Board, and maintains that registration. In the State of North Carolina, if a person is not registered as a veterinary technician, to directly or indirectly imply such is a misrepresentation to the public and a violation of the veterinary Practice Act.

22. What duties can a 'Veterinary Technician' perform?

General Statute 90-187.6(c) states a veterinary technician may, under the direct supervision of a veterinarian, assist in diagnosis, laboratory analysis, anesthesia, surgical procedures and perform the following duties: collection of specimen, testing for intestinal parasites, collecting blood, testing for heartworms and conducting other laboratory tests, taking radiographs and cleaning & polishing teeth. (Microchipping - see number 45 below.) They may NOT perform any act producing an irreversible change in the animal (e.g. pulling a tooth).

NOTE: NC Registered veterinary technicians may administer a rabies vaccine under the supervision of a NC licensed veterinarian. Both the technician and veterinarian should sign the rabies certificate.

23. What duties can a 'veterinary assistant / veterinary employee' perform?

General Statute 90-187.6(c) states a veterinary assistant / employee shall be limited to services under the direction and supervision of a NC licensed veterinarian. They may perform such duties as are required in the physical care of animals and in carrying out medical orders as prescribed by the veterinarian, requiring an understanding of animal science but not requiring the professional services set forth in General Statute 90-187.6.

They may perform duties including collection of specimen, testing for intestinal parasites, collecting blood, testing for heartworms and conducting other laboratory tests, taking radiographs, and cleaning & polishing teeth, provided that the employee has had sufficient on-the-job training by a veterinarian to perform these specified duties in a competent manner. It shall be the responsibility of the veterinarian supervising the employee to ascertain that the employee performs these specified duties assigned to the employee in a competent manner. (Microchipping - see number 46 below) These specified duties shall be performed under the direct supervision of the veterinarian in charge of administering care to the patient.

The employee may NOT perform any act producing an irreversible change in the animal (e.g. pulling a tooth).

24. Client Fees Relating to Veterinary Medicine

Suggested fees to charge clients are not addressed in the NC Veterinary Practice Act.

25. Sales by Veterinarians  READ MORE

- Sales of Medicines and Drugs
- Sales of products other than Medicines and Drugs
- Veterinarian's use of a Certificate of Exemption

26. Abandonment of Animals

G.S. 90-187.7 States that any animal placed in the custody of a licensed veterinarian for treatment, boarding or other care, which shall be unclaimed by its owner or agent for a period of more than ten (10) days after proof of written notice by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested has been successfully delivered (or proof of notice mail could not be delivered) to the owner or his agent at his last known address, shall be deemed to be abandoned and may be turned over to the nearest humane society, dog pound, or disposed of as such custodian may deem proper.

The giving of notice to the owner or agent of the owner of such animals by the licensed veterinarian shall relieve the licensed veterinarian and any custodian to whom such animal may be given of any further liability for disposal.

27. Rabies Vaccine Information

Contact the NC Department of Health and Human Services (Public Health, Epidemiology) at (919) 733-3419 - This is also their after hours EMERGENCY number.

Vaccinations must be administered by a: NC General Statute 130A-185
      Licensed Veterinarian
      Registered Veterinary Technician - under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian
      Certified Rabies Vaccinator

Vaccination Requirements & Guidelines

NOTE: NC Registered Veterinary Technicians may administer a rabies vaccine under the supervision of a NC licensed veterinarian. Both the technician and the veterinarian should sign the rabies certificate.

28. Rabies Tag Order Form

29. Disposing of NON-Controlled Medications


30. Disposing Controlled Substances / Expired Narcotics - Do not throw them away with your trash!

DEA: Drug Disposal Information

How do I dispose of expired/unwanted substances?
Contact a NC-DCU agent at 984.236.5100 or e-mail NCCSAREG@dhhs.nc.gov and submit DEA Form-41 to the DEA office, using a DEA registered controlled substances disposal form OR re-distribute to the original supplying/manufacturing company where the chemical was obtained.


Pharma Logistics (Illinois)
(847) 837-1224

31. DEA - Call Center: 800-882-9539

Greensboro, NC - Phone: (336) 547-4219
Atlanta, GA - Phone: (888) 869-9935 or (404) 893-7165

Every person or entity that handles controlled substances must be registered with DEA or be exempt by regulation from registration. To obtain a DEA registration, a practitioner must apply using a DEA Form-224. (A veterinarian must not employ an individual who will have access to controlled substance that has had his/her application for registration with the DEA denied or revoked.)
Forms & Applications
Registration Q&A

Theft/Loss of controlled substances must be reported to DEA. Submit DEA Form-106 and follow all DEA regulations regarding this matter.

The NC Drug Control Unit advises registrants to submit a copy of the DEA Form 106 to our office at the address below. In addition, all registrants may contact their local or state law enforcement agencies.
    ATTN: Drug Control Unit
    Mail Service Center 3008
    Raleigh, NC 27699

Minimum Standards for Practitioners' Handling of Controlled Substances
Controlled substances must be stored in a securely locked cabinet of substantial construction; this includes controlled substances that require refrigeration.

Even though the Federal regulations do not specifically define locked cabinet construction, the intent of the law is that controlled substances must be adequately safeguarded. Therefore, depending on other security measures, a wooden cabinet may or may not be considered adequate. In an area with a high crime rate, a strong metal cabinet or safe may be required.

Some of the factors considered when evaluating a practitioner's controlled substances security include:

  1. The number of employees, customers and/or patients who have access to the controlled substances.
  2. The location of the registrant (high or low crime area).
  3. Use of an effective alarm system.
  4. Quantity of controlled substances to be kept on hand.
  5. Prior history of theft or diversion

Q&A for Prescribing Practitioners

Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances (EPCS)


DEA Practitioner's Manual


Code of Federal Regulations

32. Drug Logs / Drug Receipts

FDA Regulation 21 CFR 1304.04(a) requires: All controlled substance records are required to be maintained for two (2) years.

33. Compounding

TITLE 21 Chapter 46 - NC Board of Pharmacy

Oct. 6, 2021: FDA Issues Revised Draft Guidance on Hosptial & Health System Compounding

Phone: (919) 246-1050
Website: NCBOP

34. Controlled Substance Regulations

Title 21 Code of Federal Regulations

Questions & Answers
Prescription Q & A
Disposing Controlled Substances / Expired Narcotics - Do not throw them away with your office trash!
DEA Drug Disposal Information

Phone: 919-733-1765

35. The issues of CBDs

Consider this...

FDA warns 15 companies for illegally selling various products containing cannabidiol as agency details safety concerns

36. NC DHHS: Required Reporting of Controlled Drugs

Began June 3, 2019
1. Veterinarain Despenser Guide
2. Quick Reference Guide
3. MODULE-1: Registration Login & Add New Users
4. MODULE-2: Data Submission

DHHS E-mail:
DHHS Phone: 855.962.4767

37. NC DHHS: Division of Health Service Regulation - Radiation Protection Section

All personnel using radiology equipment shall wear radiation badges.

Steps to Install X-Ray Equipment / Register a Facility

Registration Memorandum

38. NC Division of Waste Management

1. Solid Waste Section    (Disposal of Sharps)
2. Medical Waste Section
3. Hazardous Waste Section
4. Alternative Medical Waste Treatment Technologies Section

39. Volunteer Opportunity: Agricultural Emergency Response Act

Their mission is to train and prepare professionals to respond to all-hazards emergencies that impact animals and agriculture.

40. Heartworm Guidelines

A Veterinary - Client - Patient relationship is required to prescribe heartworm medication. American Heartworm Society

41. Animal Importation / Exportation

FAQ - Centers for Disease Control

42. After Hours Emergency Services

The veterinarian who is the owner, as well as the veterinarian who is in charge of the facility, shall provide after-hours emergency service by one or more of the methods listed below.

.0207 Minimum Facility and Practice Standards in Parts (b)(19)(A) through (D) of the NC Administrative Code. If after house emergency services shall be provided other than by the veterinarian who is the owner or who is the veterinarian in charge of the facility, the name, address and telephone numbers of the provider of the after-hours emergency service shall be posted prominently at the facility in areas where this information is likely to be seen by persons comint to the entrances of the facility.

(A) Availability by telephone, pager or answering machine; or

(B) Membership in an after-hours emergency services facility or organization that agrees with the veterinarian to assume the responsibility for this care; or

(C) An agreement for this care with another facility located in the same general community, area or region served by the primary facility and which provides after hours emergency service; or

(D) Notification of the name, address, and telephone numbers of an emergency veterinary service facility, open to the public, which provides after hours emergency service, located in the same general community, area or region served by the primary facility.

43. Data Requests

If you are interested in requesting data, please go to our Misc. Requests page for instructions.

44. License Verification SAMPLE

To request a verification, log into your personal Licensure Gateway account and select Applications / License Verification Request. Upon submission, your verification will be e-mailed to the selected Board(s). Log-In

If you DO NOT have a personal Licensure Gateway account, you will need to submit this paper application form via US mail.   Paper Request

Pharmacies, banks or other entities seeking confirmation of a veterinarian or veterinary technician can access on-line verification from our 'Home Page'.

45. Health Certificates

For pet travel, live animal export other than pets and Accreditation information, please go to our Useful Links page for additional information entitled USDA / APHIS / VS located in the 'VETERINARIANS' Section

46. Microchipping

The microchipping procedure must be performed by a veterinarian or a registered veterinary technician (RVT) employed by the veterinarian directly supervised by the veterinarian. The term 'direct supervision' means that the veterinarian is on the premises and readily available to answer questions or assist the employee being supervised. Further, an existing veterinarian-client-patient relationship (VCPR) is not required prior to microchipping being performed by the veterinarian (or by their supervised RVT). A VCPR is established with the performing of the microchipping procedure.

47. NCVMB's Regulatory Bulletins

Click here for link to Bulletins

For International and state-to-state, please go to our Useful Links page for contact information located in the 'Veterinarians' Section.

48. Are you being Cyberbullied?

On-line Reputation Management per the AVMA

49. Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD)

The VFD has taken important steps toward fundamental change in how medically important antibiotics can be legally used in feed or water for food-producing animals. For specific information please refer to the USDA’s website which provides information at:  http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/DevelopmentApprovalProcess/ucm071807.htm

50. The Opioid Epidemic: What Veterinarians Need to Know

(US Food & Drug Administration)

51. NC Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services
(Veterinary Division)

Veterinarians are required to report the diagnosis of certrain diseases to the State Veterinarian
(919) 707-3250


Information re: DVMs Administering COVID-19 Vaccinations




Contact Us

Phone: 919-854-5601
Fax: 919-854-5606

1611 Jones Franklin Rd, Ste 106
Raleigh, NC 27606