Friday, April 19, 2024

Ultrasound Operators Jailed, Accused of Unlicensed Vet Practice

From left, Ben Masemore, Ethan Wentworth and Rusty Herr.

Wentworth and Herr are currently in jail afterfacing accusations

of practicing veterinary medicine without a license.

(Photo provided by Ben Masemore)

(Editor's Note: This action taken by Pennsylvania prosecutors should concern goat producers who routinely use ultrasound to determine pregnancy. They can potentially be charged with illegally practicing veterinary medicine. This article is reprinted from the April 20 e-edition of Lancaster Farming (

By Tom Venesky

Two Pennsylvania men operating a dairy reproduction service are in prison following a complaint of practicing veterinary medicine without a license. Rusty Herr, 43, was booked at the Lancaster County Prison on April 11, while Ethan Wentworth, 33, was sent to the York

County Prison on April 10. Herr and Wentworth are listed as operating partners of Airville-based NoBull Solutions LLC. 

Veterinarians have made multiple complaints about “the illegal practice of veterinary medicine by unlicensed individuals employed by NoBull Solutions,” according to a complaint filed with the Department of State in 2020 by thePennsylvania Veterinary Medicine Association.

The complaint alleges that people employed by NoBull were doing ultrasounds and making diagnoses. The document cites reports from veterinary association members and posts on Facebook.

In 2010, Herr was ordered to pay a $3,500 fine and to cease and desist from the unlicensed practice of veterinary medicine. Wentworth got a cease-and-desist order in 2018 along with a $3,000 civil penalty. The 2020 complaint alleges that Herr and Wentworth continued to practice veterinary medicine without a license and hired others to do the same. According to dairy farmer Ben Masemore, who is acting as a spokesman for Herr and Wentworth, both men were advised by their former attorneys not to pay the fines or appear in court because they don’t see an issue with using ultrasound for reproductive services such as pregnancy checks. He said they are both serving 30-day sentences without bail.

Masemore, who is involved with Herr and Wentworth in an unrelated business, said the law governing veterinary practice is vague and doesn’t cover ultrasounding, which is a common practice on dairy farms today.

“I know of up to 20 individuals in the state using ultrasound for reproduction. Anyone can purchase one, as they are readily available today,” he said. Numerous dairy farmers in Lancaster, Lebanon, York and surrounding counties depended on the services offered by NoBull, and the operators’ detention has caused problems for those farms, Masemore said.

The Pennsylvania Veterinary Medicine Association deferred comment to the Department of State, which said it couldn’t confirm or deny an investigation due to confidentiality statutes. A search of Pennsylvania Licensing System Verification didn’t turn up any veterinary license records for Herr and Wentworth.

“The department reviews every potential practice act violation of which it becomes aware, whether that is through a complaint filed directly to the department, a notification from local law enforcement, or through media reports,” State Department spokeswoman Amy Gulli said in an email.

If the State Board of Veterinary Medicine is going to interpret ultrasounding as practicing medicine, the law needs to be changed, Masemore said.

“This really affects every single one of us (dairy farmers). With the economic situation of Pennsylvania dairy, we need all the help we can get,” Masemore said. “It’s not easy out there, and people need to change the way that dairy in Pennsylvania is being treated. We’re being tarred and feathered economically,and the burden keeps getting worse.” A recording on the phone line listed for NoBull Solutions said that due to the legal situation and staff shortages, the business is not scheduling herd checks or horse services before May 20.

The message urges callers to contact the state veterinary board and local lawmakers to express their concerns about the situation. A “NoBull Solutions LLC Defense Fund” has been set up for the men on GiveSendGo and at local banks. For more information, call 717-887-6465.


Monday, April 15, 2024

Goats take center stage as Commissioner Shell proclaims April as Goat Month in Kentucky

Goat producers, industry stakeholders join Commissioner at proclamation signing.

 Kentucky goat producers and industry stakeholders joined Commissioner of Agriculture Jonathan Shell April 12 as he signed a proclamation declaring April as Goat Month in Kentucky.

“The diversity of goats on our agricultural landscape is one that needs to be celebrated, particularly this month,” Commissioner Shell said. “Not only do they add a uniqueness to farm life, but they are also an excellent source of protein and dairy products. This month we salute all that goats add to our state’s agricultural outlook.”

In the United States, goats are primarily used for producing dairy products, such as milk, yogurt, and cheese, and meat called chevon. Kentucky has 5,300 dairy goats producing quality breeding stock, and healthy, all natural skin products like soaps and lotions. The popularity of goat meat is increasing each year as consumers recognize its benefits. Goat meat is lean with low levels of saturated fat and cholesterol, high levels of iron, and packed with proteins and vitamins. Kentucky ranks sixth in the nation for meat goat inventory with 59,000 head. The meat goat inventory has increased 5.4 percent since 2023, being produced by 4,000 farmers.


In addition to their nutritious value, goats can increase property values. Across the world, farmers use them to combat noxious weeds on their property, promote healthy forests, and prevent wildfires.

“Kentucky continues to be a leader in goat production because of our abundant forages and best management practices. Over 4,000 goat producers work very hard to produce high quality products for consumers,” said Kelley Yates, executive director of the Kentucky Sheep and Goat Development Office. “We are excited to showcase the versatility of goats in Kentucky during the month of April and hope more people learn of their benefits and impact in our state.”


The Kentucky goat industry adds more than $3.5 million in revenue to Kentucky’s agriculture receipts. Warren County is the top county in goat production with nearly 2,800 head, followed by Crittenden, Barren, Clinton, and Nelson counties rounding out the top five.


A variety of goat products can be found at local farmers’ markets or consumers can purchase directly from a producer. The Kentucky Sheep and Goat Development Office offers information on its website with tips for cooking this lean, delicious meat. The website also offers a buyer's guide at: