Elk & Deer Health

Chronic Wasting Disease

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) affecting farmed and free-ranging deer, elk, and moose, in North America.

CWD is a progressive, fatal, degenerative neurological disease. It was first recognized in 1967 as a clinical ‘wasting’ syndrome of unknown cause in captive mule deer in Colorado. CWD belongs to the family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs). TSEs include a number of different diseases affecting animals or humans including bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle, scrapie in sheep and goats, and Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease (CJD) in humans. Although CWD shares certain features with other TSEs, it is a distinct disease affecting only deer, elk, and moose.

TAHC CWD Herd Programs

The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) provides a voluntary herd status program for species that are susceptible to CWD. Those that participate in the program must have a herd inventory performed annually by a TAHC, USDA, or accredited veterinarian.

For more information about the CWD herd program, call your TAHC region office or 800-550-8242 x777.

USDA CWD Herd Programs

For Producers: Find a TAHC Certified CWD Veterinarian

This is a list of veterinarians that have authorized TAHC to publish their information. To determine if a veterinarian not listed is a TAHC Certified CWD Veterinarian for antemortem CWD testing, please contact the TAHC Authorized Personnel Department at authorized_personnel@tahc.texas.gov or call Laura Leal at (512) 719-0761 or Dr. Susan Culp at (512) 719-0716.

Rules and Regulations

Movement Requirements and Records

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) Mandatory CWD Testing Requirements and Check Stations

    Hunters who harvest mule deer, white-tailed deer, or elk within the Trans-Pecos and Pahnhandle CWD Containment and Surveillance Zones are REQUIRED to bring their animals to a TPWD check station within 24 hours of harvest. TAHC and TPWD urges voluntary sampling of hunter harvested deer and other CWD susceptible species in the Medina area CWD Surveillance Zone. The map of the check stations can be found on the TPWD Website.

TAHC Chronic Wasting Disease Zones

TAHC Information Resources

Informational Websites

Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel

This section of the website was developed to become a quick reference for you as a Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) Certified Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program. The TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program regulations and requirements apply to a person, other than an accredited veterinarian licensed to practice veterinary medicine in Texas, who collects and submits samples for official post-mortem CWD testing in Texas.

Questions about the TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program not answered here? Contact us at authorized_personnel@tahc.texas.gov or call Ms. Laura Leal at (512) 719-0761 or Dr. Susan Culp at (512) 719-0716.

TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collectors

To view the list of ALL TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collectors that have agreed to publish their contact information click here.

To view the list of TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collectors located in Containment and Surveillance Zones click here.

TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Application Process

To sign up for an in person class, contact your TAHC Region Office for available dates and locations.

To check the status of your Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector training and renewal date, contact Authorized Personnel Staff at authorized_personnel@tahc.texas.gov or call Ms. Laura Leal at (512) 719-0761 or Dr. Susan Culp at (512) 719-0716.

Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program Application and Instructions

Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program - Online Application

Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis Testing Available for Cervid Producers