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Table of 2012/2013 Amendments to State Laws



Rebecca F. Wisch


Animal Legal & Historical Center
Publish Date:
2013
Place of Publication: Michigan State University College of Law

Printable Version

This table gives a synopsis of state law amendments from 2012 to early 2013 with links to the text of those laws. There are several important new laws or amendments to existing laws that should be noted.

First, several states made changes to existing animal fighting laws. California raised penalties for animal fighting laws across the board. Idaho added a provision to its cockfighting law making it a felony to knowingly advertise, promote, or organize a cockfight where controlled substances or gambling are present. New York criminalized the sale of animal fighting paraphernalia with the intent engage in or otherwise promote or facilitate animal fighting.

Ohio enacted a comprehensive exotic pet law, the Dangerous Wild Animals and Restricted Snakes Act. Under this new section, no person shall possess a dangerous wild animal on or after January 1, 2014 unless he or she is authorized under an unexpired wildlife shelter/propagation permit or other exception. Dangerous wild animals include big cats, some smaller exotic cats, bears, elephants, hyenas, gray wolves, alligators, crocodiles and nonhuman primates other than lemurs.

State legislators also enacted changes to dog laws, especially where it concerns dogs in commercial breeding settings. The Kansas pet animal act added "adequate veterinary care" to breeder standards as did Rhode Island in its Animal Care Act. Nebraska made it clear that a commercial dog breeder license can be denied or revoked when a breeder has been convicted of any law regarding the disposition or treatment of dogs or cats in any jurisdiction. In addition, the State spelled out grooming requirements for dogs in these facilities. Oklahoma renumbered and amended its Commercial Pet Breeders Act, changing the authority to the State Board of Agriculture instead of the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners.

Animal cruelty and assistance animals were also hot topics for change. New York outlawed "cage and box dryers" at companion animal grooming facilities. Pennsylvania and Tennessee added measures that protect service animals from harassment and attacks. Rhode Island joined states that address dog tethering by making some forms of prolonged or restrictive tethering illegal. This state also created the new position of "animal advocate" to assist in cruelty investigations. New Jersey created a prohibition on the slaughter and sale of horsemeat for human consumption in its cruelty provisions.

Dogs were also a topic in dangerous dog laws. Georgia replaced its Vicious Dog Control Act with a more comprehensive "Responsible Dog Ownership Law." Ohio now distinguishes "dangerous dogs" (dogs who have killed or seriously injured another person or killed another dog) and "nuisance dogs" (one who has approached a person in either a menacing fashion or has attempted to bite a person). This change also resulted in requirements for owners of each type of dog. Virgina too changed its existing dangerous dog law by categorizing dogs as either "dangerous" or "vicious." Interestingly, the new law does not allow a vicious dog determination based solely on the dog's breed and excludes dogs in certain situations involving trespass or provocation.

Wolves were also a legal target in 2012. Under the Minnesota Game and Fish code, a new law was added related to the taking of wolves. Since the federal delisting of the population of wolves in Minnesota, wolves may now be hunted in Minnesota under the "Gray Wolf Management Plan." The commissioner can establish open seasons, quota limits, and limitation on the number of hunters or trappers who can take wolves. Both Oregon and Wyoming established new wolf depredation compensation programs. These will provide compensation to individuals who suffer loss or injury to livestock or hunting/working dogs due to wolf depredation.

Look at the table below to see what changes your state made in 2012/2013.

State Laws Amended in Late 2011, 2012 and 2013 Summary of Major Animal-Related Amendments
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona

A. R. S. § 13-2910

A. R. S. § 11-1014

A. R. S. § 11-1029

A. R. S. § 17-305

Anti-cruelty:

The state added a controversial section to its primary anti-cruelty law preventing local governments from enacting animal cruelty ordinances that prohibit or restrict any activity involving farm or shepherding dogs. A cruelty ordinance that concerned extended tethering or over-working of dogs would have to comply with this law and exclude farm, shepherding, or ranch dogs:

F. An incorporated city or town or a county may adopt an ordinance with misdemeanor provisions at least as stringent as the misdemeanor provisions of this section, except that any ordinance adopted shall not prohibit or restrict any activity involving a dog, whether the dog is restrained or not, if the activity is directly related to the business of shepherding or herding livestock and the activity is necessary for the safety of a human, the dog or livestock or is permitted by or pursuant to title 3.

A. R. S. § 13-2910.

Vicious animals:

Under Article 6, Animal Control, Section § 11-1014 on the procedure to deal with biting animals, this paragraph was added:

J. This section does not apply to a dog that is used by any federal, state, county, city or town law enforcement agency and that bites any person if the bite occurs while the dog is under proper law enforcement supervision and the care of a licensed veterinarian, except that the law enforcement agency shall notify the county enforcement agent if the dog exhibits any abnormal behavior and make the dog available for examination at any reasonable time.

A. R. S. § 11-1014.

Section § 11–1029 concerning hearings on the disposition of vicious animals was amended. The language was streamlined so that the authority of animal control officers to act under the act is clear. Additionally, phrasing related to animals that have been "cruelly mistreated or cruelly neglected" was removed. The law now deals only with vicious animals.

Finally, the following was added, allowing an animal not found vicious to be returned to its owner:

If the justice of the peace or city magistrate determines that the animal is not vicious, the justice of the peace or city magistrate may order the animal returned to the owner, except that if the owner fails to appear at the hearing, the justice of the peace or city magistrate may order that the animal be forfeited to the officer or agent for transfer to a legally incorporated humane society, county animal shelter or approved rescue agency and be made available for adoption or humane destruction.

A. R. S. § 11-1029.

Wildlife taking:

In the Game and Fish Code, a new law was added addressing the taking of wildlife with unauthorized weapons:

§ 17-305. Possession of other weapons while hunting; violation; classification

A. The possession of legal weapons, devices, ammunition or magazines, which are not authorized to take wildlife, is not prohibited while hunting if the weapon or device is not used to take wildlife.

B. Taking wildlife by using a weapon, device, ammunition or magazine that is not authorized to take wildlife is a class 1 misdemeanor.

A. R. S. § 17-305.

 

Arkansas
California

CA PENAL § 597.1(a)(2)(A) - (E)

CA PENAL § 597.1(k)(1) - (4)

CA PENAL § 597b

CA PENAL § 597c

CA PENAL § 597i

CA PENAL § 597j

CA FISH & G § 4810

Anti-cruelty:

The state's primary misdemeanor animal cruelty law underwent two major amendments.

The first added a section allowing a humane or animal control officer, when necessary to protect the health and safety of a wild, stray, or abandoned animal or the health and safety of others, to administer a tranquilizer that contains a controlled substance to an animal.

The officer must have training in the administration of tranquilizers from a licensed veterinarian, firearms training, authorization from his or her agency, euthanasia training, completed a state and federal fingerprinting background check, and must not have any drug- or alcohol-related convictions.

CA PENAL § 597.1(a)(2)(A) - (E)

The second amendment to this law concerns dogs or cats seized in connection with the owner's criminal charges. Prior to the final disposition of any criminal charges, the seizing agency or prosecuting attorney may file a petition in a criminal action requesting that, prior to that final disposition, the court issue an order forfeiting the animal to the city, county, or seizing agency.

The court must then set a hearing on the disposition of the dog or cat within 14 days.

The petitioner shall have the burden of establishing beyond a reasonable doubt that, even in the event of an acquittal of the criminal charges, the owner will not legally be permitted to retain the animal in question. If the court finds that the petitioner has met its burden, the court shall order the immediate forfeiture of the animal as sought by the petition.

CA PENAL § 597.1(k)(1) - (4)

Animal fighting:

The fines for violation of many of the state's animal fighting laws were amended.

The fine for engaging in animal fighting or aiding and abetting in the fighting of animals was raised from $5,000 to $10,000.

CA PENAL § 597b

The fine for being a spectator at an animal fight was raised from $1,000 to $5,000.

CA PENAL § 597c

The fine for making, selling, or possessing animal fighting implements was raised from $5,000 to $10,000.

CA PENAL § 597i

The fine for keeping an animal for fighting purposes was raised from $5,000 to $10,000.

CA PENAL § 597j

Hunting bear with dogs:

§ 4756. Repealed by Stats.2012, c. 595 (S.B.1221), § 6

The repealed section, added by Stats.1957, c. 1916, p. 3349, § 2, amended by Stats.1971, c. 513, p. 1008, § 1, related to the use of dogs in hunting bear.

Mountain lions:

The section entitled, "§ 4810 Mountain lion research; monitoring devices; research project objectives; Scientific Collecting Permit" was added. The law allows qualified individuals, educational institutions, governmental agencies, or nongovernmental organizations to conduct scientific research involving mountain lions pursuant to a Scientific Collecting Permit.

CA FISH & G § 4810

Colorado

C. R. S. A. § 18-9-202.5

Anti-cruelty:

Section 18-9-202.5 of the Criminal Code underwent several amendments 2012. This section deals with animals impounded because of alleged neglect or abuse or because of investigation of charges of cruelty to animals.

The amendment added a section that allows an owner to request an independent veterinary exam after the animal is impounded:

(II) To the extent practicable, within seventy-two hours after an impoundment described under subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (a), upon request from the owner or custodian of the impounded animal, the impound agency shall allow a licensed veterinarian of the owner's or custodian's choosing and at his or her expense to examine the animal at a time and place selected by the impound agency, which examination may include taking photographs of the animal and taking biological samples for the purpose of diagnostic testing.

The law was further amended to create a hearing process for an owner to determine the costs of care of the impounded animal(s) and whether there is sufficient probable cause for the impoundment:

(II) At the hearing, the court shall determine, as appropriate:

(A) Whether costs associated with the impoundment, care, and provision, as determined by the impound agency, are fair and reasonable and necessary, which costs shall be specifically itemized by the impound agency prior to the date of the hearing and shall include, at a minimum, an accounting of the costs of upkeep and veterinary services;

(B) Whether there was sufficient probable cause for the impoundment; and

(C) If the court finds probable cause for impoundment existed and the owner or custodian elects not to pay the reasonable impoundment, care, or provision costs to prevent disposition, release of the animal to the impound agency for disposition.

(III) A warrant issued in accordance with C.R.C.P. 41(b) authorizing seizure of the impounded animal constitutes prima facie evidence of sufficient cause for impoundment.

(IV) If probable cause is found at a hearing conducted under this paragraph (c), the owner or custodian shall file payment for costs at the hearing.

Subsection (2)(a) was added stating that failure to pay impoundment and care costs results in forfeiture of the right to contest those costs, as well as ownership rights in the animal or animals in question.

Subsection (c) was added, which allows euthanization of animals in severe distress:

If, in the opinion of a licensed veterinarian, an impounded animal is experiencing extreme pain or suffering or is severely injured past recovery, severely disabled past recovery, or severely diseased past recovery, the animal may be euthanized without a court order.

Finally, subsection (3) was added requiring an impound agency to refund all costs associated with care and impoundment if, after trial, a judge or enters or returns in favor of the owner or custodian a verdict of not guilty for all charges related to the original impoundment of the animal.

C. R. S. A. § 18-9-202.5

Connecticut

C. G. S. A. § 22-328

C. G. S. A. § 22-332e

C. G. S. A. § 53-247

C. G. S. A. § 22-329

C. G. S. A. § 22-329b

C. G. S. A. § 22-344

C. G. S. A. § 22-344b

C. G. S. A. § 26-55

Animal control:

The 2012 amendments added requirements for the training of animal control officers.

(c) No person may begin serving in the position of state, regional or municipal animal control officer on or after July 1, 2012, unless such person (1) has completed a training program that meets the requirements of subsection (d) of this section and received a certificate of such completion from the commissioner pursuant to subsection (e) of this section, or (2) submits an affidavit to the commissioner agreeing to complete such a training program not later than one year after beginning such position. The commissioner shall reimburse each person completing such a training program for the costs of the program, from the animal population control account established in section 22-380g.

 * * *

(f) Each animal control officer shall complete a minimum of six hours of continuing education related to the duties of an animal control officer in each calendar year. The commissioner shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, concerning the implementation of such continuing education requirement.

C. G. S. A. § 22-328

In 2011, a law was added spelling out requirements for regional or municipal dog pounds contracts with animal rescue organizations for veterinary treatment of injured, sick or diseased animal.

C. G. S. A. § 22-332e

Anti-cruelty:

A subsequent penalty provision was added to the state's main cruelty law (§ 53-247):

 . . . and for each subsequent offense, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both.

C. G. S. A. § 53-247

The penalty in Section 22-329 was clarified. This law concerns interfering with law enforcement officer who is responding to animal cruelty. The changes created a fine of not more than $50 or imprisonment of not more than 30 days to a Class D misdemeanor.

C. G. S. A. § 22-329

In 2011, this provision was added: "§ 22-329b. Reporting of neglected or cruelly treated animals:"

(a) Any animal control officer appointed pursuant to section 22-328, 22-331 or 22-331a who (1) has reasonable cause to suspect that an animal observed in the course of the officer's employment is being or has been harmed, neglected or treated cruelly in violation of section 53-247, and (2) files a verified petition with the Superior Court pursuant to section 22-329a, shall make a written report to the Commissioner of Agriculture in accordance with subsection (b) of this section.

(b) The report shall be made by the officer as soon as practicable, but not later than forty-eight hours after the officer has filed the verified petition. Each report shall contain, if known: (1) The address where the animal was observed and the name and address of the owner or other person responsible for care of the animal; (2) the name and a description of the animal; (3) the nature and extent of the harm, neglect or cruelty to the animal; (4) the approximate date and time such harm, neglect or cruelty occurred; (5) any information concerning any previous harm to, neglect of or cruelty toward the animal; (6) the circumstances under which such harm, neglect or cruelty came to be known by the officer; and (7) the name and address of every person the officer reasonably suspects to be responsible for such harm, neglect or cruelty.

(c) Not later than November 1, 2011, and monthly thereafter, the Commissioner of Agriculture shall send a report to the Commissioner of Children and Families containing all of the information received pursuant to subsection (b) of this section during the preceding month.

C. G. S. A. § 22-329b

Pet shops:

Under § 22-344, amendments added this language to subsection (f): "the commissioner may issue a fine to such commercial kennel, pet shop, grooming facility or training facility of not more than five hundred dollars for each animal that is the subject of such violation."

C. G. S. A. § 22-344

Under § 22-344b, the subsection (i) was added to this section:

(b) (1) If, (A) within twenty days of sale, any such dog or cat becomes ill or dies of any illness which existed in such dog or cat at the time of the sale, or (B) within six months of sale, any such dog or cat is diagnosed with a congenital defect that adversely affects or will adversely affect the health of such dog or cat, such licensee shall: (i) Reimburse such consumer not more than five hundred dollars for services and medications provided to such dog or cat by any veterinarian licensed pursuant to chapter 384 for the treatment of such illness or congenital defect upon the presentation by such consumer to such licensee of a certificate from such veterinarian that such dog or cat suffers or suffered from such illness or congenital defect. No licensee may require the consumer to return such dog or cat to such licensee to receive such reimbursement . . .

C. G. S. A. § 22-344b

Wild animals:

Under § 26-55, the law concerning introducing wild animals into the state, the following species were excluded from the law:

For the purpose of this subsection and any regulation adopted pursuant to this subsection, ferrets (Mustela putorius), hedgehogs of the family Erinaceidae, genera Atelerix, sugar gliders (Petaurus breviceps) and degu (Octodon degus) shall not be deemed to be wild mammals.

C. G. S. A. § 26-55

Delaware
D.C.
Florida F.S.A. 828.161

Anti-cruelty:

F.S.A. 828.161. Repealed by Laws 2012, c. 2012-83, § 19, eff. July 1, 2012

This law prohibited artificial coloring and sale of certain animals and fowls, was derived from Laws 1967, c. 67-177, § 1 and Laws 1971, c. 71-136, § 953.

 

Georgia

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-1

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-4

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-5

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-20 to 33

Dog law:

Under Chapter 8 on "Dogs," the general provisions amended the intent of the chapter:

It is the intention of this chapter to establish as state law minimum standards for the control and regulation of dogs and to establish state crimes for violations of such minimum standards. However, this chapter shall not prohibit local governments from adopting and enforcing ordinances or resolutions which provide for more restrictive control and regulation of dogs than the minimum standards provided for in this chapter.

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-1

Liability for damage done by dog:

The chapter also amended the state's strict liability law for damage done by dogs. Some of the primary changes included:

  • language that makes it clear the law applies to dog "while off the owner's or custodian's property"
  • the addition of "pet animal" to list of animals to which dog causes injury or death
  • the addition of the following sentence: "The owner or, if no owner can be found, the custodian exercising care and control over any dog shall be liable for any damage caused by such dog to public or private property."

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-4

In the law that prohibits cruel acts against dogs, "pet animal" was added to the list of animals in the exceptions:

(a) No person shall perform a cruel act on any dog; nor shall any person harm, maim, or kill any dog, or attempt to do so, except that a person may:

(1) Defend his or her person or property, or the person or property of another, from injury or damage being caused by a dog; or

(2) Kill any dog causing injury or damage to any livestock, poultry, or pet animal.

[emphasis added]. Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-5

Dangerous dog law:

Georgia replaced its Vicious Dog Control Act with the new "Responsible Dog Ownership Law."

Ga. Code Ann., § 4-8-20 to 33

Hawaii

H R S § 711-1109.1

H R S § 711-1109.2

H R S § 711-1101

Anti-cruelty:

The term "equine animal" was added allowing law enforcement officers to enter premises under search warrants or other legal authority to impound animals. Previously, the law stated only "pet animal."

H R S § 711-1109.1

This change also occurred in the subsequent law (§ 711-1109.2, "Forfeiture of animal prior to disposition of criminal charges").

H R S § 711-1109.2

The amendment also added a definition for the types of animals in the definitional section:

(8) As used in this section, “pet animal or equine animal” includes any offspring from the pet animal or equine animal that was pregnant at the time of the rescue and born during the impoundment of the pet animal or equine animal.”

H R S § 711-1101

Idaho

I.C. § 25-3506

I.C. § 25-3520A

 

Animal fighting:

The state's cockfighting law was amended in 2012 to make organizing, advertising, promoting, or a fight between two or more gamecocks a felony where gambling or controlled substances were present. The new provision states:

(2) Every person who knowingly advertises, promotes or organizes a public or private display of combat between two (2) or more gamecocks in which the fighting, killing, maiming or injuring of gamecocks is a significant feature and at which:

(a) Any controlled substance listed in section 37-2732C, Idaho Code, is present; and

(b) Any act of gambling, as defined in section 18-3801, Idaho Code, occurs;

is guilty of a felony and shall, upon conviction, be punished in accordance with the penalty provisions in section 25-3520A(3)(a), Idaho Code.

(3) Every person who knowingly advertises, promotes or organizes a public or private display of combat between two (2) or more gamecocks in which the fighting, killing, maiming or injuring of gamecocks is a significant feature and at which:

(a) Gaffs or other artificial or mechanical means are used to enhance pain, inflict injury or to cause death; or

(b) Any substance to enhance activity, aggressiveness or bodily energy has been administered to a gamecock;

is guilty of a misdemeanor for a first violation and shall, upon conviction, be punished in accordance with the penalty provisions of section 25-3520A(1), Idaho Code. Any person convicted of a second or subsequent violation of the provisions of this subsection is guilty of a felony and shall, upon conviction, be punished in accordance with the penalty provisions of section 25-3520A(3)(a), Idaho Code. Each prior conviction shall constitute one (1) violation of the provisions of this subsection regardless of the number of counts involved in the conviction.

I.C. § 25-3506

Anti-cruelty:

Additionally, under the same chapter on animal care, the penalty provision for the cruelty laws was amended. This change created a felony offense for those convicted of two or more previous cruelty violations:

(b) Except as provided in section 25-3503, Idaho Code, any person convicted of a third or subsequent violation who previously has been found guilty of or has pled guilty to two (2) violations of section 25-3504, Idaho Code, provided the violations were for conduct as defined by section 25-3502(5)(a), Idaho Code, within fifteen (15) years of the first conviction, shall be guilty of a felony and punished for each offense by a jail sentence of not more than twelve (12) months or a fine of not less than five hundred dollars ($500) or not more than nine thousand dollars ($9,000) or by both fine and imprisonment. All other violations of section 25-3504, Idaho Code, for conduct as defined by any other paragraphs, other than paragraph (a) of section 25-3502(5), Idaho Code, shall constitute misdemeanors and shall be punishable as provided in paragraph (a) of this subsection.

(c) Each prior conviction or guilty plea shall constitute one (1) violation of this chapter regardless of the number of counts involved in the conviction or guilty plea. Practices described in section 25-3514, Idaho Code, are not animal cruelty.

I.C. § 25-3520A

Illinois 510 ILCS 5/10

Assistance animals:

Repealed Act 630, "Service Animal Access Act"

720 I.L.C.S. 630/.01 - 1

Impoundment of companion animals:

Under the Animal Control Act, language was added to § 10 stating that scanning for a microchip and/or examination for other identification on an impounded dog or cat "shall be done within 24 hours after the intake of each dog or cat."

The amendment also added the following language to the law outlining contact procedures for impounded companion animals:

A mailed notice shall remain the primary means of owner, agent, or caretaker contact; however, the Administrator shall also attempt to contact the owner, agent, or caretaker by any other contact information, such as by telephone or email address, provided by the microchip or other method of identification found on the dog or cat. If the dog or cat has been microchipped and the primary contact listed by the chip manufacturer cannot be located or refuses to reclaim the dog or cat, an attempt shall be made to contact any secondary contacts listed by the chip manufacturer prior to adoption, transfer, or euthanization. Prior to transferring the dog or cat to another humane shelter, rescue group, or euthanization, the dog or cat shall be scanned again for the presence of a microchip and examined for other means of identification. If a second scan provides the same identifying information as the initial intake scan and the owner, agent, or caretaker has not been located or refuses to reclaim the dog or cat, the animal control facility may proceed with the adoption, transfer, or euthanization.

510 ILCS 5/10

 

Indiana
Iowa
Kansas

K. S. A. 47-1701

K. S. A. 47-1706

K. S. A. 47-1726

 

 

Pet breeding/sale facilities:

The Kansas Pet Animal Act underwent several amendments in 2012. In the definition section, the definition for "adequate veterinary care" added a provision requiring that veterinary care be documented and maintained on the premises. Additionally, such documentation must be made available to the animal health commissioner if requested.

K. S. A. 47-1701

Section 1706 relating to grounds for refusal to issue or renew licenses now includes failing to provide veterinary care in its provisions:

(a) The commissioner may refuse to issue or renew or may suspend or revoke any license or permit required under K.S.A. 47-1701 et seq., and amendments thereto, for any one or more of the following reasons:

* * *

(10) failure to provide adequate veterinary medical care to the animals in such licensee or permittee's custody or care; or

(11) failure to maintain or provide documentation of the provision of adequate veterinary medical care, as required in K.S.A. 47–1701(dd), and amendments thereto, to animals in such licensee or permittee's custody or care when access to such is requested by the commissioner or the commissioner's authorized representatives.

K. S. A. 47-1706

Finally, under Section 47-1726 dealing with the citation and purpose of act, exemptions were expanded:

The provisions of this act shall not apply to any farm, kennel or other premises registered with and inspected by the national greyhound association which is used solely for the purposes of breeding, maintaining, training or selling greyhound dogs, as greyhound is defined in K.S.A. 74–8802, and amendments thereto. The commissioner shall have the authority to enter into agreements with the national greyhound association pertaining to the aforementioned greyhound premises. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, any agreements between the commissioner and the national greyhound association may contain terms allowing the commissioner to access records, complete inspections of such premises and other related matters.

K. S. A. 47-1726

 

Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland

MD Code, Human Services, § 7-701

MD Code, Human Services, § 7-704

 

Assistance animals:

Under Title 7, Individuals with Disabilities, the term "volunteer" was added to the definition for a service animal trainer:

§ 7-701. Definitions

(h) “Service animal trainer” means a person who trains or raises service animals for individuals with disabilities, whether the person is a professional or volunteer.

MD Code, Human Services, § 7-701

In the same chapter, section § 7-704 was amended to add "service animal trainers" to the equal rights and access law:

§ 7-704. Rights of individuals with disabilities

(a) Individuals with disabilities, the parents of a minor child with a disability, and service animal trainers who are accompanied by an animal being trained or raised as a service animal have the same right as individuals without disabilities to the full and free use of the roads, sidewalks, public buildings, public facilities, and other public places.

MD Code, Human Services, § 7-704

Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota

M.S.A. § 97B.647

Wolves:

Under the Game and Fish code, a new law was added related to the taking of wolves. Since the federal delisting of the population of wolves in Minnesota, wolves may now be hunted in Minnesota under the "Gray Wolf Management Plan." The new law requires a wolf hunting or trapping license. The commissioner can establish open seasons, quota limits, and limitation on the number of hunters or trappers who can take wolves.

M.S.A. § 97B.647

Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-626

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-630

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-641

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-641.01

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-641.02

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-641.03

 

Commercial dog breeders:

The Commercial Dog and Cat Operator Inspection Act was significantly amended in 2012. A definition for "commercial dog breeder" was added:

 (8) Commercial dog breeder means a person engaged in the business of breeding dogs:

(a) Who sells, exchanges, leases, or in any way transfers or offers to sell, exchange, lease, or transfer thirty-one or more dogs in a twelve-month period beginning on April 1 of each year;

(b) Who owns or harbors four or more dogs, intended for breeding, in a twelve-month period beginning on April 1 of each year;

(c) Whose dogs produce a total of four or more litters within a twelve-month period beginning on April 1 of each year; or

(d) Who knowingly sells, exchanges, or leases dogs for later retail sale or brokered trading;

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-626

Section 54-630 was amended to allow the department to deny an application for a license or renewal if an applicant has:

(a) Has been convicted of any law regarding the disposition or treatment of dogs or cats in any jurisdiction; or

(b) Has operated a breeder facility under a license or permit issued by any jurisdiction that has been revoked, suspended, or otherwise subject to a disciplinary proceeding brought by the licensing authority in that jurisdiction if such proceeding resulted in the applicant having voluntarily surrendered a license or permit to avoid disciplinary sanctions.

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-630

Section 54-641 created specific requirements for primary enclosures. The law also required that commercial dog breeders ensure that each dog under his or her care, supervision, or control receives adequate veterinary care. An interesting provision was included as to "sampling" records for the dogs:

(2) During regularly scheduled inspections of a commercial dog breeder's facility conducted by the department, the health records of a random sample of at least five percent of the breeding dogs shall be reviewed to verify that such records correspond to the dog's permanent identification and verify that the health records are properly maintained.

Neb. Rev. St. § 54-641

Exercise requirements were added in a new section (Neb. Rev. St. § 54-641.01).

Grooming requirements and standards for birthing and euthanasia at breeding facilities were also specified under the amendments:

(3) For each dog under the commercial dog breeder's care, supervision, or control, the breeder shall:

(a) Ensure that all breeding dogs receive regular grooming. Coat matting shall not exceed ten percent, and nails shall be trimmed short enough to ensure the comfort of the dog;

(b) Contact a licensed veterinarian without delay after an occurrence of a serious or life-threatening injury or medical condition of such dog. The dog shall be treated as prescribed by the veterinarian;

(c) Ensure that all surgical births or other surgical procedures shall be performed by a licensed veterinarian using anesthesia. Commercial dog breeders may remove dew claws and perform tail docking under sterile conditions within the first seven days of the dog's life. Wounds shall be treated and monitored by the breeder; and

 (d) Ensure that, if euthanasia is necessary, it shall be performed by a licensed veterinarian in accordance with recommendations for the humane euthanization of dogs as published by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Other new sections include:

54-641.02. Commercial dog breeder; veterinary care; review of health records; duties of breeder

54-641.03. Breeding dog; microchip; identification

 

Nevada
New Hampshire

N.H. Rev. Stat. § 466:8

N.H. Rev. Stat. § 437:15

 

Assistance animals:

In Chapter 466 on cats and dogs, the section dealing with exemption from fees for registration and licensing, language was added that allows someone without an identification card issued by a recognized dog training agency to show evidence that dog has passed the Assistance Dogs International Public Access Test administered by a service animal trainer. The owner must also present a letter from a health care professional stating that the individual requires the use of a service animal to perform tasks directly related to his or her disability. The owner may also elect permanent registration and licensing that is not subject to annual renewal so long as such dog has met the requirements of this section.

N.H. Rev. Stat. § 466:8

Sale of pets:

Under Chapter 437 on the sale of pets, amendments to Section 437:15 removed "chicks, ducklings, goslings" so that the law now only includes rabbits younger than 4 weeks old. The amendments also removed "in quantity of less than 12 birds or animals to an individual person" from end of law.

N.H. Rev. Stat. § 437:15

 

New Jersey

N.J.S.A. 4:22-26

N.J.S.A. 18A:46-13.3

N. J. S. A. 2C:25-28

 

Anti-cruelty:

In the anti-cruelty laws, a prohibition on horse slaughter for human consumption was added. A person may not:

(2) Knowingly slaughter a horse for human consumption;

(3) Knowingly sell or barter, or offer for sale or barter, at wholesale or retail, for human consumption, the flesh of a horse, or any product made in whole or in part from the flesh of a horse, or knowingly accept or publish newspaper advertising that includes the offering for sale, trade, or distribution of any such item for human consumption;

(4) Knowingly transport a horse for the purpose of slaughter for human consumption;

(5) Knowingly transport horsemeat, or any product made in whole or in part from the flesh of a horse, for the purpose of human consumption;

For a violation of paragraph (2), (3), (4), or (5) of subsection y. of this section, a sum of not less than $500 nor more than $1,000 for each horse slaughtered or transported for the purpose of slaughter for human consumption, or for each horse carcass or meat product transported, sold or bartered, or offered or advertised for sale or barter;

N.J.S.A. 4:22-26

Assistance animals:

A new section was added in Title 18A, Education: 18A:46-13.3. Service or guide dogs permitted for certain students; administrative requirements.

The law states that "[a] student with a disability, including autism, shall be permitted access for a service animal in school buildings, including the classroom, and on school grounds. . ."

N.J.S.A. 18A:46-13.3

In law allowing restraining orders in domestic violence cases, the law was amended to allow inclusion of companion animals in such orders:

b. In addition the court may enter an order directing the possession of an animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by either party or a minor child residing in the household. Where a person has abused or threatened to abuse such animal, there shall be a presumption that possession of the animal shall be awarded to the non-abusive party.

N. J. S. A. 2C:25-28

New Mexico
New York

McKinney's Agriculture and Markets Law § 351

McKinney's Agriculture and Markets Law § 353-e

McKinney's Agriculture and Markets Law § 401 

McKinney's E. C. L. § 71-0703

McKinney's ECL § 11-0512

McKinney's ECL § 11-0523

McKinney's ECL § 11-0917

Animal fighting:

New York's animal fighting law was amended to include a prohibition against selling animal fighting paraphernalia with the intent to engage in or otherwise promote or facilitate animal fighting. Violation is a class B misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for a period of up to ninety days, or by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars, or by both such fine and imprisonment. Animal fighting paraphernalia includes the following:

  • a breaking stick
  • a cat mill
  • a treadmill
  • a springpole
  • a fighting pit
  • any other instrument commonly used in the furtherance of pitting an animal against another animal.

McKinney's Agriculture and Markets Law § 351

Anti-cruelty:

A new section was added to the state's cruelty laws that specifically affects companion animal grooming facilities:

1. As used in this section:

(a) “Cage and box dryer” means a product that is attached to or near a cage or box for the purpose of drying or aiding in the drying of a companion animal contained in a cage or box, and which is capable of functioning without a person manually holding a dryer.

(b) “Companion animal grooming facility” means an establishment where a companion animal may be bathed, brushed, clipped or styled for a fee.

2. No person shall use a cage or box dryer which contains a heating element with the heating element turned on for the purpose of drying or aiding in the drying of a companion animal.

3. Any violation of this section shall be punishable by a civil penalty of not less than two hundred fifty dollars nor more than five hundred dollars for each violation.

4. Nothing contained in this section shall limit or abrogate any claim or cause of action any person may have under common law or by statute. The provisions of this section shall be in addition to any such common law and statutory remedies.

McKinney's Agriculture and Markets Law § 353-e

Under Section 26-A on the care of animals by pet dealers, the section on minimum standards of care added a veterinary care requirement.

5. Veterinary care. (a) Any pet dealer duly licensed pursuant to this article shall designate an attending veterinarian, who shall provide veterinary care to the dealer's animals which shall include a written program of veterinary care and regular visits to the pet dealer's premises. . .

The section also added exercise requirements for dogs:

7. Exercise requirements. Pet dealers shall develop, maintain, document, and implement an appropriate plan to provide dogs with the opportunity for daily exercise. In developing such plan, consideration should be given to providing positive physical contact with humans that encourages exercise through play or other similar activities. Such plan shall be approved by the attending veterinarian, and must be made available to the department upon request.

McKinney's Agriculture and Markets Law § 401

Invasive species:

Under § 71-0703, a penalty was added for introducing invasive species:

9. a. Any person who transports, sells, imports or introduces invasive species, in violation of the regulations promulgated pursuant to section 9-1709 of this chapter shall be subject to the following:

For any first violation in lieu of a penalty there may be issued a written warning by the department and there may also be issued education materials at the discretion of the department regarding requirements related to invasive species. Such person shall, however, for any subsequent violation thereafter be subject to a fine of no less than two hundred fifty dollars.

McKinney's E. C. L. § 71-0703

Wild animals:

Under Section § 11-0512, "Possession, sale, barter, transfer, exchange and import of wild animals as pets prohibited," a new part was added that prohibits a person from "intentionally releas[ing] or set[ting] at-large any wild animal, authorized by this section for use as a pet, from the location where the animal is permitted to be possessed or harbored."

McKinney's ECL § 11-0512

Another section of the Environmental Conservation Code added muskrats to the list of destructive or menacing wildlife that may be taken without a permit:

6. Raccoons, muskrats, coyotes or fox injuring private property may be taken by the owner, occupant or lessee thereof, or an employee or family member of such owner, occupant or lessee, at any time in any manner.

McKinney's ECL § 11-0523

A section was added the law that deals with possession and sale of wild game to protect bears from illegal gallbladder harvesting:

b. Bear gallbladders and bile shall not be possessed, bartered, sold or offered for sale or offered for barter unless a valid bear tag is attached. For the purposes of this paragraph a valid bear tag shall mean the tag or similar identification required by the governmental entity that permitted the legal taking of such bear. Possession of a bear gallbladder without a valid bear tag shall be prima facie evidence of a violation of this paragraph. A minimum five thousand dollar penalty shall be issued per infraction of this paragraph. Nothing in this section prohibits an officer, employee, or agent of the federal government or the department from possessing, transporting, delivering, or receiving bear gallbladders or bile, for wildlife law enforcement purposes.

McKinney's ECL § 11-0917

 

North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio

RC § 955.02

RC § 955.11

RC § 955.54

RC § 955.99

R.C. § 935.01 - 99

R.C. § 2927.21 (repealed)

Dog laws:

Chapter 955 concerning dogs added a new law defining "dog kennel:"

As used in this chapter, “dog kennel” or “kennel” means an establishment that keeps, houses, and maintains adult dogs, as defined in section 956.01 of the Revised Code, for the purpose of breeding the dogs for a fee or other consideration received through a sale, exchange, or lease and that is not a high volume breeder licensed under Chapter 956. of the Revised Code.

RC § 955.02

Also in the same chapter, the definitions for "dangerous dog" and "nuisance dog" were amended.

(1)(a) “Dangerous dog” means a dog that, without provocation, and subject to division (A)(1)(b) of this section, has done any of the following:

(i) Caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person;

(ii) Killed another dog;

(iii) Been the subject of a third or subsequent violation of division (C) of section 955.22 of the Revised Code.

* * *

(b) “Nuisance dog” does not include a police dog that while being used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of official duties has chased or approached a person in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person.

The law then added a definition for "serious injury:"

(5) “Serious injury” means any of the following:

(a) Any physical harm that carries a substantial risk of death;

(b) Any physical harm that involves a permanent incapacity, whether partial or total, or a temporary, substantial incapacity;

(c) Any physical harm that involves a permanent disfigurement or a temporary, serious disfigurement;

(d) Any physical harm that involves acute pain of a duration that results in substantial suffering or any degree of prolonged or intractable pain.

The term "vicious dog" was defined to mean "a dog that, without provocation and subject to division (A)(6)(b) of this section, has killed or caused serious injury to any person." Notably, the previous language that defined a vicious dog as a dog that "[b]elongs to a breed that is commonly known as a pit bull dog" was removed in the amendment.

The amendments added requirements for those owners who have been previously convicted under the law for failing to keep the dog confined or under reasonable control. These include proof of adequate liability insurance, obtaining a dangerous dog registration certificate, and notifying law enforcement if the dog gets loose, bites a person, attacks another animal when off-property, or is sold, given away, or dies.

A dangerous dog certificate under the changes to the law requires:

  • the person is at least 18 years old
  • pay a fee of $50
  • gives contact information
  • shows satisfactory rabies vaccination proof
  • shows satisfactory evidence of spaying or neutering
  • shows satisfactory evidence that warning signs have been posted
  • shows satisfactory evidence that the dog has been microchipped

RC § 955.11

Section 955.22, "Confinement or restraint of dog; liability insurance; debarking or surgically silencing dog" was recognized as unconstitutional by State v. Mallis, 964 N.E.2d 1096, 1097+, 196 Ohio App.3d 640 (Ohio App. 7 Dist. Sep 15, 2011).

A new section was added to the dog laws that prohibits ownership of certain dogs on or after the effective date of the law if a person has been convicted of a violent felony under this chapter, chapter 959 (Offenses Relating to Domestic Animals), chapter 2923 (Conspiracy, Attempt, and Complicity; Weapons Control), or chapter 2925 (Drug Offenses). These dogs include:

(1) An unspayed or unneutered dog older than twelve weeks of age;
 
(2) Any dog that has been determined to be a dangerous dog under Chapter 955. of the Revised Code.

RC § 955.54

The penalty section of the dog law was also amended. Important changes include:

  • the ability of the court to order the offender to personally supervise the nuisance dog or complete obedience training, or both
  • a requirement to obtain at least $100,000 in liability insurance for a dangerous dog (if the dog is not ordered destroyed) during the pendency of the proceedings
  • a requirement to post security for an impounded dog under the section

RC § 955.99

Exotic pets:

The state adopted the Dangerous Wild Animals and Restricted Snakes Act. Under this new section, no person shall possess a dangerous wild animal on or after January 1, 2014 unless he or she is authorized under an unexpired wildlife shelter/propagation permit or other exception. Dangerous wild animals include big cats, some smaller exotic cats, bears, elephants, hyenas, gray wolves, alligators, crocodiles and nonhuman primates other than lemurs. Except as provided, no person shall acquire, buy, sell, trade, or transfer possession or ownership of a dangerous wild animal on or after the effective date of this section. There is a "grandfather" provision that allows a current possessors of a prohibited species to keep the animal provided they: register the animal no less than 60 days after the bill's effective date; apply for the applicable permit; microchip the animals; and acquire liability insurance or surety bonds in amounts from $200,000 to $1 million, among other requirements. These owners also must comply with housing and safety standards established by the Ohio Department of Agriculture. The section also controls the possession of restricted snakes.

R.C. § 935.01 - 99

The enactment of this law resulted in the repeal of section 2927.21, "Escape of exotic or dangerous animal; report."

R.C. § 2927.21

Oklahoma 4 Okl.St.Ann. § 30.1 - 30.16

Commercial Pet Breeders:

Oklahoma Commercial Pet Breeders Act of 2012 was added. The original Act of 2010 was repealed and the new section is now under Title 4 dealing with Animals. The State Board of Agriculture now administers the Act. Previously, the Act was under the authority of the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners in Title 59. Under the old law, a State Board of Commercial Pet Breeders was established who then, under the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners, promulgated rules and procedures for licensing, standards and penalties. The new law extends authority to the State Board of Agriculture who then enforces and administer the provisions of the Commercial Pet Breeders Act of 2012. The licensing and inspection requirements remained much the same. The high end of possible penalties for violations under the new act was increased to $10,000.

The law requiring a commercial breeders' directory was kept. The Board must post on its website the directory of commercial pet breeders who have been denied licensing, or whose licenses have been revoked.

The law also changed the funding source for the act, stating, "There is hereby created in the State Treasury a revolving fund for the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry to be designated the Commercial Pet Breeders Assistance Revolving Fund. All monies accruing to the credit of the Commercial Pet Breeders Assistance Revolving Fund are hereby appropriated . . ."

4 Okl.St.Ann. § 30.1 - 30.16

 

Oregon

O. R. S. § 686.435

O. R. S. § 610.150

 

Veterinary practice:

The veterinary practice code was amended to allow a veterinary facility to remove a domestic animal from the facility if the keeper does not retake possession of the domestic animal.

Prior to the removal of a domestic animal under this section, the veterinary facility must send the keeper a letter by certified mail notifying the keeper that the domestic animal will be removed from the facility if the keeper does not arrange to retake possession of the domestic animal. The letter must be addressed to the last address for the keeper known to the veterinary facility.

O. R. S. § 686.435

Wolves:

A new law enables the State Department of Agriculture to establish and implement a wolf depredation compensation and financial assistance grant program under ORS 610.155. This program will provide grants to assist counties for programs under which:

(a) Compensation is paid to persons who suffer loss or injury to livestock or working dogs due to wolf depredation; and

(b) Financial assistance is provided to persons who implement livestock management techniques or nonlethal wolf deterrence techniques designed to discourage wolf depredation of livestock.

O. R. S. § 610.150

Pennsylvania 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 5511

Assistance animals:

The state's cruelty law was amended to include injury to guide and service dogs by other dogs. The owner or co-owner is responsible only he or she knows the dog has a propensity to attack human beings or domestic animals without provocation and the owner or co-owner knowingly or recklessly failed to restrain the dog or keep the dog in a contained, secure manner. If the owner or co-owner is found guilty, he or she may face a civil penalty of up to $15,000 and restitution. The new sections state:

(a.1) Guide dogs.--

(1) A person commits a misdemeanor of the third degree if he is the owner or co-owner of a dog that kills, maims or disfigures a guide dog of an individual who is blind, a hearing dog of an individual who is deaf or audibly impaired or a service dog of an individual who is physically limited without provocation by the guide, hearing or service dog or the individual.

(2) A person commits an offense under this subsection only if the person knew or should have known that the dog he owns or co-owns had a propensity to attack human beings or domestic animals without provocation and the owner or co-owner knowingly or recklessly failed to restrain the dog or keep the dog in a contained, secure manner.

(3) Any person convicted of violating the provisions of this subsection shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $5,000 and shall be ordered to make reparations for veterinary costs in treating the guide, hearing or service dog and, if necessary, the cost of obtaining and training a replacement guide, hearing or service dog.

(a.2) Civil penalty and restitution.--

(1) A person who is the owner or co-owner of a dog that kills, maims or disfigures a guide dog of an individual who is blind, a hearing dog of an individual who is deaf or audibly impaired or a service dog of an individual who is physically limited shall be subject to paragraph (2) if all of the following apply:

(i) The owner or co-owner knew the dog had a propensity to attack human beings or domestic animals.

(ii) The owner or co-owner failed to restrain the dog or keep the dog in a contained, secure manner.

(2) A court of common pleas may impose any of the following upon any person who is the owner or co-owner of a dog under paragraph (1):

(i) A civil penalty of up to $15,000.

(ii) Reparations for veterinary costs in treating the guide, hearing or service dog and, if necessary, the cost of retraining the dog or of obtaining and training a replacement guide, hearing or service dog.

(iii) Loss of income for the time the individual is unable to work due to the unavailability of the guide, hearing or service dog.

18 Pa.C.S.A. § 5511

 

Rhode Island

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-1-31

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-1-6.1

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-13-1.2

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-13-42

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-19-2

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-1.1-1, et seq.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-26-1, et. seq.

 

Anti-cruelty:

Under the state's cruelty law, a law created the new position of "animal advocate" to assist in cruelty investigations:

(b) Right of entry where cruelty suspected. The director of the department of environmental management or any veterinarian employed by the department of environmental management designated by the director for such purpose, having reason to suspect the existence of cruelty to animals within the meaning of this chapter upon any grounds or premises, is hereby authorized and empowered to enter upon those grounds or premises for enforcement of the provisions of this chapter. For such inspections, the department shall, unless a search without a warrant is otherwise allowed by law, seek a search warrant from an official of a court authorized to issue warrants.

(c) The director of the department of environmental management may designate a department veterinarian or veterinarians to act as animal advocates. A general agent or special agent from the Rhode Island society for the prevention of cruelty to animals may also act in that capacity.

(d) The animal advocate shall make recommendations to any court before which the custody or well-being of an animal is at issue.

(e) Any animal care facility licensed by the United States department of agriculture or holding a public health service (PHS) assurance of compliance shall be exempt from the provisions of this section.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-1-31

A prohibition on tail docking of cattle was added:

Any person who intentionally cuts or alters the bone, tissues, muscles or tendons of the tail of any bovine or otherwise operates upon it in any manner for the purpose or with the effect of docking, setting, or otherwise altering the natural carriage of the tail, or who knowingly permits the same to be done upon the premises of which he or she is the owner, lessee, proprietor or user, or who assists in or is voluntarily present at such cutting or alteration, is guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment for not more than one year, or by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars ($500), or both. If any bovine is found with the bone, tissues, muscles or tendons of its tail cut or altered as aforesaid upon the premises or in the charge and custody of any person, and the wound resulting therefrom is unhealed, such fact may be evidence of a violation of this section by the owner or user of such premises, or the person having such charge or custody.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-1-6.1

Dogs:

Under Chapter 13 on dogs, a new definition was added defining a dog tether:

(11) “Tether” means the practice of fastening a dog to a stationary object or stake by a chain, rope or other tethering device as a means of keeping the dog under control. A dog being walked on a leash is not tethered.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-13-1.2

A new section was then added that regulates the tethering of dogs:

(a) It shall be a violation of this section for an owner or keeper to:

(1) Keep any dog on a permanent tether that restricts movement of the tethered dog to an area less than one hundred thirteen square feet (113 sq. ft.), or less than a six foot (6’) radius at ground level.

(2) Tether a dog with a choke-type collar or prong-type collar.
 
(3) Keep any dog tethered for more than ten (10) hours during a twenty-four (24) hour period or keep any dog confined in a pen, cage or other shelter for more than fourteen (14) hours during any twenty-four (24) hour period.

(b) It shall be a violation of this section for an owner or keeper to fail to provide a dog with adequate feed, adequate water, or adequate veterinary care as those terms are defined in § 4-19-2; provided however, that adequate veterinary care may be provided by an owner using acceptable animal husbandry practices.

(c) Any person in violation of this section shall be given a warning for a first violation. Second and subsequent violations of this subsection can be considered a violation of § 4-1-2. Each day of violation shall constitute a separate offense.

There are many exceptions under the law. Any person in violation of this section shall be imprisoned not exceeding eleven (11) months, or fined not less than fifty dollars ($50.00) nor exceeding five hundred dollars ($500), or both. Each day of violation shall constitute a separate offense.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-13-42

Livestock care:

Chapter 1.1, Unlawful Confinement of a Covered Animal, was added and goes into effect June 19, 2013. The purpose of this chapter, subject to exceptions set forth in § 4-1.1-4, is to prohibit the confinement of calves raised for veal and sows during gestation.

Some important points:

  • the provisions of this chapter are in addition to, and not in lieu of, any other laws protecting animal welfare.
  • it is not an affirmative defense to alleged violations of this chapter that the calf or sow was kept as part of an agricultural operation and in accordance with customary animal husbandry or farming practices.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-1.1-5

The "Rhode Island Livestock Welfare and Care Standards Advisory Council Act of 2012" was added.

This Act declares that "[l]ivestock deserve a safe, healthy and humane environment that ensures protection from unnecessary or unjustifiable pain."

It creates a livestock care standards advisory council that reviews and evaluates laws and rules of the state applicable to the care and handling of livestock and issues recommendations.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-26-1, et. seq.

Pet shops:

This section added to definitions in Animal Care Act (chapter 19). This act deals with the care of animals in commerce (pet shops and auctions) as well as animal shelters. This term was added:

(3) “Adequate veterinary care” means care by a licensed veterinarian sufficient to prevent the animal from experiencing unnecessary or unjustified physical pain or suffering.

Gen. Laws, 1956, § 4-19-2

 

South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee

T. C. A. § 39-14-216

T. C. A. § 39-14-217

 

Anti-cruelty:

The offense of aggravated cruelty to livestock was also added. A person commits aggravated cruelty to a livestock animal who, in a depraved and sadistic manner, intentionally engages in any of the conduct described, the conduct results in serious bodily injury to the animal or the death of the animal, and is without justifiable or lawful purpose.

The section excepts such things as dispatching rabid or diseased livestock, scientific research, accepted veterinary practices, engaging in usual and customary livestock practices, applying methods and dispatching wild or livestock animals on a farm.

Violation is a Class E felony.

T. C. A. § 39-14-217

Assistance animals:

A new section was added that makes it an offense to maim or harm, or attempt to do so, or permit an animal owned to harm a service animal (violation is a Class A misdemeanor).

Under the law, it is an offense to knowingly interfere with a service animal in the performance of its duties (Class C misdemeanor).

In addition to any other penalty provided by this section, a person convicted shall be ordered by the court to make full restitution for all damages that arise out of or are related to the offense, including incidental and consequential damages incurred.

T. C. A. § 39-14-216

Texas
Utah
Vermont

20 V.S.A. § 3622

Impoundment of dogs:

In the section that allows local law enforcement to issue warrant to seize unlicensed dogs or wolf-hybrids, the following language was added giving a time after which dogs or wolf-hybrids can be destroyed:

If the dog or wolf-hybrid cannot be placed in an adoptive home or transferred to a humane society or rescue organization within ten days, or a greater number of days established by the municipality, the dog or wolf-hybrid may be destroyed in a humane way.

20 V.S.A. § 3622

Virginia

 Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6540

Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6542

Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6540.1

 

Dangerous and vicious dogs:

Virginia amended its law on the control of dangerous or vicious dogs. Under § 3.2-6540, the time under which an owner of a dog found to be dangerous must register the dog was changed from 10 to 45 days. The fee for the dangerous dog registration certificate was increased to $150 from $50. The 2012 amendments made the animal control officer responsible for posting registration information on the Virginia Dangerous Dog Registry. A companion section § 3.2-6542 also mandates that each county and city submit to the State Veterinarian by January 31 of each year $90 for each dangerous dog it initially registered and $25 for each dangerous dog for which it renewed registration within the previous calendar year.

This law was further amended in 2013. A dog found to be dangerous under this law must now be held by animal control until the dangerous dog hearing:

Whenever an owner or custodian of an animal found to be a dangerous dog is charged with a violation of this section, the animal control officer shall confine the dangerous dog until such time as evidence shall be heard and a verdict rendered. The court, through its contempt powers, may compel the owner, custodian, or harborer of the animal to produce the animal.

Upon conviction, the court may (i) order the dangerous dog to be disposed of by a local governing body pursuant to § 3.2–6562 or (ii) grant the owner up to 45 days to comply with the requirements of this section, during which time the dangerous dog shall remain in the custody of the animal control officer until compliance has been verified. If the owner fails to achieve compliance within the time specified by the court, the court shall order the dangerous dog to be disposed of by a local governing body pursuant to § 3.2–6562. The court, in its discretion, may order the owner to pay all reasonable expenses incurred in caring and providing for such dangerous dog from the time the animal is taken into custody until such time that the animal is disposed of or returned to the owner.

 Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6540

The 2013 amendments also created a new section, "§ 3.2–6540.1 - Vicious dogs; penalties." This amendment removed the definition for "vicious dog" from 6540 and created a whole new classification in the new law:

“Vicious dog” means a canine or canine crossbreed that has (i) killed a person, (ii) inflicted serious injury to a person, or (iii) continued to exhibit the behavior that resulted in a previous finding by a court or, on or before July 1, 2006, by an animal control officer as authorized by ordinance that it is a dangerous dog, provided that its owner has been given notice of that finding.

Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6540.1.

The law mandates that a local animal control officer confine the dog until a hearing and establishes a hearing procedure to determine whether the dog is vicious. If the dog is found to be vicious, the owner must pay restitution to the person injured or to the estate of person killed by the dog. The owner then faces additional criminal penalties:

D. Any owner or custodian of a canine or canine crossbreed or other animal whose willful act or omission in the care, control, or containment of a canine, canine crossbreed, or other animal is so gross, wanton, and culpable as to show a reckless disregard for human life and is the proximate cause of such dog or other animal attacking and causing serious injury to any person is guilty of a Class 6 felony. The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to any animal that, at the time of the acts complained of, was responding to pain or injury or was protecting itself, its kennel, its offspring, a person, or its owner's or custodian's property, or when the animal is a police dog that is engaged in the performance of its duties at the time of the attack.

Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6540.1.

Notably, the new law does not allow a vicious dog determination based solely on the dog's breed and excludes dogs in certain situations involving trespass or provocation:

C. No canine or canine crossbreed shall be found to be a vicious dog solely because it is a particular breed, nor is the ownership of a particular breed of canine or canine crossbreed prohibited. No animal shall be found to be a vicious dog if the threat, injury, or damage was sustained by a person who was (i) committing, at the time, a crime upon the premises occupied by the animal's owner or custodian; (ii) committing, at the time, a willful trespass upon the premises occupied by the animal's owner or custodian; or (iii) provoking, tormenting, or physically abusing the animal, or can be shown to have repeatedly provoked, tormented, abused, or assaulted the animal at other times. No police dog that was engaged in the performance of its duties as such at the time of the acts complained of shall be found to be a vicious dog. No animal that, at the time of the acts complained of, was responding to pain or injury or was protecting itself, its kennel, its offspring, a person, or its owner's or custodian's property, shall be found to be a vicious dog.

Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6540.1.

 

Washington

RCWA 16.08.040

RCWA 77.15.240

RCWA 77.15.130

Dog bite:

The dog bite strict liability law was amended to so that police dogs are excluded from its provisions.

RCWA 16.08.040

Dogs chasing big game:

The law dealing with dogs becoming a nuisance by chasing big game like deer, moose or elk, was amended. A section was added to allow fish and game officers to take the dog into custody or, if necessary to avoid repeated harassment, injury, or death of wildlife under this section, destroy the dog.

RCWA 77.15.240

Wildlife, protected:

Under the law prohibiting the taking of protected wildlife, a section was added that creates a "criminal wildlife penalty assessment." Fines are assessed for the death of certain protected wildlife species:

(a) Ferruginous hawk, two thousand dollars;

(b) Common loon, two thousand dollars;

(c) Bald eagle, two thousand dollars;

(d) Golden eagle, two thousand dollars; and

(e) Peregrine falcon, two thousand dollars.

RCWA 77.15.130

 

West Virginia
Wisconsin W. S. A. 29.888

Wolves:

The state added a new section dealing with damage done by wolves. Section 29.888 establishes a wolf depredation program, "under which payments may be made to persons who apply for reimbursement for death or injury caused by wolves to livestock, to hunting dogs other than those being actively used in the hunting of wolves, and to pets and for management and control activities conducted by the department for the purpose of reducing such damage caused by wolves."

Notably, "[t]he department may make payments for death or injury caused by wolves under this program only if the death or injury occurs during a period of time when the wolf is not listed on the federal endangered list and is not listed on the state endangered list."

W. S. A. 29.888

 

Wyoming
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