Born in Villeneuve-la-Guyard, he received his education at the École nationale vétérinaire d'Alfort and the École Nationale Vétérinaire de Lyon. At the age of 21 he joined the staff at the latter institution, where in 1875 he became the school's director. In 1886 he was appointed professor of comparative pathology at the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle in Paris.
Throughout his career Chauveau conducted investigations in the fields of microbiology, virology, biochemistry, muscle thermodynamics and cardiology. With Étienne-Jules Marey (1830–1904), he performed important studies involving the different phases of the cardiac cycle and intracardiac pressure.
He was the author of Traité d'anatomie comparée des animaux domestiques, which was published in English as "The comparative anatomy of the domesticated animals". Also, he collaborated with Charles-Joseph Bouchard (1837–1915) in the founding of the Journal de Physiologie et de Pathologie Générale.
- Auguste Chauveau, Saturnin Arloing (1873). The comparative anatomy of the domesticated animals. Translator George Fleming (2 ed.). D. Appleton and company.
- Biography of Etienne Jules Marey. Hrsonline.org (2009-06-17). Retrieved on 2012-04-30.
- AUGUSTE CHAUVEAU – Encyclopédie Universalis. Universalis.fr. Retrieved on 2012-04-30.
- Fye, W. Bruce. "Jean-Baptiste Auguste Chauveau". Clinical Cardiology 26 (7): 351. doi:10.1002/clc.4950260712.
- Vivisection in America, by Albert Leffingwell. Animal-rights-library.com. Retrieved on 2012-04-30.
- Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association- 1917 (biography)
-  List of Prokaryotic names with Standing in Nomenclature, Clostridium chauvoei
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