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Connecticut

Title 53. Crimes. Chapter 945. (Offenses Against Humanity and Morality) Cruelty to Animals. Title 29. Public Safety and State Police. Chapter 530A. Connecticut Humane Society. Title 22. Agriculture. Domestic Animals. Chapter 435. Dogs and Other Companion Animals. Kennels and Pet Shops.

Statute Details
Printable Version
Citation: CT ST §§ 53-242 - 254; § 29-108a - 108i; § 22-327 - 330

Citation: C. G. S. A. §§ 53-242 - 254; § 29-108a - 108i; § 22-327 - 330


Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 02/2011

Summary:   This Connecticut section contains the state's anti-cruelty and animal fighting provisions.  Any person who overdrives, drives when overloaded, overworks, tortures, deprives of necessary sustenance, mutilates or cruelly beats or kills or unjustifiably injures any animal, or fails to give an animal in his or her custody proper care, among other things shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year or both.  An enhanced penalty is provided for any person who maliciously and intentionally maims, mutilates, tortures, wounds or kills an animal (up to $5,000 or imprisonment not more than five years or both). 


Statute in Full:

Title 53. Crimes. Chapter 945. (Offenses Against Humanity and Morality) Cruelty to Animals.

§§ 53-242 to 53-246. Repealed. (1969, P.A. 828, § 214, eff. Oct. 1, 1971.)

§ 53-247. Cruelty to animals. Animals engaged in exhibition of fighting. Intentional injury or killing of police animals or dogs in volunteer canine search and rescue teams

§ 53-248. Sale or treatment of animals unable to work

§ 53-249. Cruelty to poultry

§ 53-249a. Sale of dyed fowl or rabbits

§ 53-250. Use of animals, reptiles and birds

§ 53-251. Docking of horses' tails

§ 53-252. Transportation of animals on railroads

§ 53-253. Notice of arrest of offender to be given

§ 53-254. Repealed. (1969, P.A. 828, § 214, eff. Oct. 1, 1971.)

§§ 53-255 to 53-258. Repealed. (1969, P.A. 828, § 214, eff. Oct. 1, 1971.)

§§ 53-242 to 53-246. Repealed. (1969, P.A. 828, § 214, eff. Oct. 1, 1971.)

Title 29. Public Safety and State Police. Chapter 530A. Connecticut Humane Society.

§ 29-108a. Definitions

§ 29-108b. Appointment of agents as special police officers

§ 29-108c. Prevention of cruelty to animals

§ 29-108d. Disposition of animal or vehicle of person arrested

§ 29-108f. Repealed. (1992, P.A. 92-242, § 2.)

§ 29-108g. Destruction of animal in the charge of the society

§ 29-108h. Use of high altitude euthanasia devices prohibited

§ 29-108i. Officers and agents to have certificates or badges

Title 22. Agriculture. Domestic Animals. Chapter 435. Dogs and Other Companion Animals. Kennels and Pet Shops.

§ 22-327. Definitions

§ 22-327a. Omitted in Gen.St., Rev. to 1972

§ 22-328. Enforcement. Animal control officers. Expenses

§ 22-329. Prevention of cruelty to dogs and other animals

§ 22-329a. Seizure and custody of neglected or cruelly treated animals. Animal abuse cost recovery account

§ 22-330. Authority of officers issuing summons

 

 

§ 53-247. Cruelty to animals. Animals engaged in exhibition of fighting. Intentional injury or killing of police animals or dogs in volunteer canine search and rescue teams

(a) Any person who overdrives, drives when overloaded, overworks, tortures, deprives of necessary sustenance, mutilates or cruelly beats or kills or unjustifiably injures any animal, or who, having impounded or confined any animal, fails to give such animal proper care or neglects to cage or restrain any such animal from doing injury to itself or to another animal or fails to supply any such animal with wholesome air, food and water, or unjustifiably administers any poisonous or noxious drug or substance to any domestic animal or unjustifiably exposes any such drug or substance, with intent that the same shall be taken by an animal, or causes it to be done, or, having charge or custody of any animal, inflicts cruelty upon it or fails to provide it with proper food, drink or protection from the weather or abandons it or carries it or causes it to be carried in a cruel manner, or fights with or baits, harasses or worries any animal for the purpose of making it perform for amusement, diversion or exhibition, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than one year or both.

(b) Any person who maliciously and intentionally maims, mutilates, tortures, wounds or kills an animal shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both. The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to any licensed veterinarian while following accepted standards of practice of the profession or to any person while following approved methods of slaughter under section 22-272a, while performing medical research as an employee of, student in or person associated with any hospital, educational institution or laboratory, while following generally accepted agricultural practices or while lawfully engaged in the taking of wildlife.

(c) Any person who knowingly (1) owns, possesses, keeps or trains an animal engaged in an exhibition of fighting for amusement or gain, (2) possesses, keeps or trains an animal with the intent that it be engaged in an exhibition of fighting for amusement or gain, (3) permits an act described in subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection to take place on premises under his control, (4) acts as judge or spectator at an exhibition of animal fighting for amusement or gain, or (5) bets or wagers on the outcome of an exhibition of animal fighting for amusement or gain, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both.

(d) Any person who intentionally injures any animal while such animal is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of a peace officer, as defined in section 53a-3, or intentionally injures a dog that is a member of a volunteer canine search and rescue team, as defined in section 5-249, while such dog is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of the active individual member of such team, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years or both.

(e) Any person who intentionally kills any animal while such animal is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of a peace officer, as defined in section 53a-3, or intentionally kills a dog that is a member of a volunteer canine search and rescue team, as defined in section 5-249, while such dog is in the performance of its duties under the supervision of the active individual member of such team, shall be fined not more than ten thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than ten years or both.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8571; 1971, P.A. 99; 1984, P.A. 84-181; 1989, P.A. 89-121; 1990, P.A. 90-325, § 30, eff. June 6, 1990; 1991, P.A. 91-35, § 3, eff. April 22, 1991; 1993, P.A. 93-36; 1996, P.A. 96-243, § 8, eff. June 6, 1996; 2004, P.A. 04-241, § 4.)

 

§ 53-248. Sale or treatment of animals unable to work

Any person who sells, offers for sale, trades or gives away any horse for the purpose of being worked, which could not be worked in this state without violating the provisions of section 53-247, or any person who leads, rides or drives an animal on any public highway for any purpose except that of conveying the animal to a suitable place for its humane keeping or killing or for medical or surgical treatment, which animal could not be worked in this state without violating the provisions of said section, shall be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than six months or both.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8572.)

 

§ 53-249. Cruelty to poultry

Any crate or other container used for the purpose of transporting, shipping or holding for sale any live poultry shall be in a sanitary condition and shall be constructed so as to provide sufficient ventilation and warmth, and such poultry, while in such container, shall receive such reasonable care as may be required to prevent unnecessary suffering. Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days or both.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8573.)

 

§ 53-249a. Sale of dyed fowl or rabbits

Any person who sells or offers for sale at retail or gives away, living chickens, ducklings, other fowl or rabbits, which have been dyed, colored or otherwise treated so as to import to them an artificial color, shall be fined not more than one hundred and fifty dollars.

CREDIT(S)

(1965, Feb.Sp.Sess., P.A. 82, § 1.)

 

§ 53-250. Use of animals, reptiles and birds

Any person who uses any animal, reptile or bird for the purpose of soliciting any alms, collection, contribution, subscription, donation or payment of money, or uses any animal or bird as a prize or award in the operation of any game or device, or exhibits any wild animal in connection with any business for the purpose of attracting trade upon any street, highway or public park or at any fair, exhibition or place of amusement, recreation or entertainment, or owns, keeps or has in his custody any animal, reptile or bird for any such purpose, shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days or both, but no provision of this section shall be construed so as to apply to the exhibition of any animal, reptile or bird by any educational institution or in a zoological garden or in connection with any theatrical exhibition or circus or to the use of any animal in a cow-chip raffle.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8574; 1990, P.A. 90-325, § 31, eff. June 6, 1990; 1991, P.A. 91-35, § 4, eff. April 22, 1991.)

 

§ 53-251. Docking of horses' tails

(a) Any person who cuts the bone of the tail of any horse for the purpose of docking the tail or who cuts the muscles or tendons of the tail of a horse, or otherwise operates upon it in any manner for the purpose or with the effect of altering the natural carriage of the tail, or who causes or knowingly permits such cutting or operation to be done upon premises of which he is the owner, lessee, proprietor or user, or assists in or is present at such cutting or operation, shall be fined not more than three hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than one year or both. Any horse with a tail set or apparently with a tail set shall be accessible and subject to inspection by any officer or agent of the Connecticut Humane Society.

(b) If a horse is found with the bone, muscles or tendons of its tail so cut and with the wound resulting from such cutting unhealed upon the premises of any person, such facts shall be prima facie evidence that the person who occupies or has the use of the premises on which such horse is so found has committed the offense described in subsection (a). If a horse is found with the bone, muscles or tendons of its tail so cut and with the wound resulting from such cutting unhealed in the charge or custody of any person, such facts shall be prima facie evidence that the person having the charge or custody of such horse has committed the offense charged in said subsection (a).

(c) No provision of this section shall be construed to prevent the operation by a registered veterinarian upon the tail of a horse when such operation is necessary for the health of the horse or is the means of effecting the natural carriage of its tail.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8575.)

 

§ 53-252. Transportation of animals on railroads

No railroad company, in transporting animals, shall permit them to be confined in cars more than twenty-eight consecutive hours, except when transported in cars in which they have proper food, water, space and opportunity for rest, without unloading them for food, water and rest, for at least five consecutive hours, unless prevented by storm or other accidental cause; and, in estimating such confinement, the time during which the animals have been confined, without such rest, on connecting roads from which they are received, shall be included. Animals so unloaded shall be properly fed, watered and sheltered during such rest by the owner or person having their custody or, on his neglect, by the railroad company transporting them, at his expense; and such company shall, in such case, have a lien upon such animals for food, care and custody furnished and shall not be liable for any detention of them for such purpose. Any such company or the owner or custodian of such animals, who does not comply with the provisions of this section, shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars. The knowledge and acts of agents of, and of persons employed by, such company, in regard to animals transported, owned or employed by it or in its custody, shall be held to be its acts and knowledge.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8577.)

 

§ 53-253. Notice of arrest of offender to be given

Any person making an arrest for a violation of the laws relating to cruelty to animals shall use reasonable diligence to give notice thereof to the owner of animals found in the charge or custody of the person arrested and shall properly care and provide for them until their owner takes charge of them, provided the owner shall take charge of them within sixty days from the date of such notice; and the person making such arrest shall have a lien on such animals for the expense of such care and provision.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 8578.)

§ 53-254. Repealed. (1969, P.A. 828, § 214, eff. Oct. 1, 1971.)

 

§§ 53-255 to 53-258. Repealed. (1969, P.A. 828, § 214, eff. Oct. 1, 1971.)
 

Title 29. Public Safety and State Police. Chapter 530A. Connecticut Humane Society.

§ 29-108a. Definitions

The terms “animals” and “animal”, as used in this chapter and in sections 53-247, 53-252 and 53-253, shall include all brute creatures and birds.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2915; 1958 Rev., § 17-22.)


§ 29-108b. Appointment of agents as special police officers

The Commissioner of Public Safety may appoint, at the request of the Connecticut Humane Society, accredited agents of that society as special police officers to serve for two years from the date of their respective appointments, subject to removal by said commissioner. Such officers shall serve without pay, except their regular compensation as agents of said society. They shall receive no fees for service or return of any criminal process and shall have, throughout the state, the powers of constables and police officers to arrest and detain any person violating any provision of the statutes concerning cruelty to animals.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2917; 1958 Rev., § 17-23; 1977, P.A. 77-614, § 486, eff. Jan. 1, 1979; 1988, P.A. 88-156, § 11; 2000, P.A. 00-99, § 137, eff. Dec. 1, 2000.)


§ 29-108c. Prevention of cruelty to animals

Any officer or agent of the Connecticut Humane Society may lawfully interfere to prevent the perpetration of any act of cruelty upon any animal in his presence, and any person who interferes with or obstructs or resists any such officer or agent in the discharge of his duty shall be fined not more than fifty dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2916; 1958 Rev., § 17-24.)


§ 29-108d. Disposition of animal or vehicle of person arrested

When any person arrested under any provision of the laws relating to cruelty to animals is, at the time of such arrest, in charge of any vehicle drawn by or containing any animal cruelly treated, any agent or officer of the Connecticut Humane Society may take charge of such animal and of such vehicle and its contents, and shall give notice thereof to the owner, if known, at his last-known address by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, and if the owner is not known, by publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the town in which the society took charge of such animal. The society shall care and provide for the animal and the vehicle and its contents until their owner takes charge of them or, if the state claims such seized property is a nuisance, until they are destroyed or disposed of in accordance with section 54-33g. The society shall have a lien on any such animal and vehicle for the expenses of such care and provision.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2918; 1958 Rev., § 17-25; 1988, P.A. 88-325, § 2.)


§ 29-108e. Detention and disposition of neglected or cruelly treated animals

(a) Any officer or agent of the Connecticut Humane Society may lawfully take charge of any animal found neglected or cruelly treated, in violation of sections 22-366, 22-415 and 53-247 to 53-252, inclusive, and shall thereupon proceed as provided in subsection (b) of this section, except that if, in the opinion of a licensed veterinarian, such animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed immediately, such officer or agent may humanely destroy or cause such animal to be humanely destroyed.

(b) Such officer or agent shall file with the superior court which has venue over such matter a verified petition plainly stating such facts as to bring such animal within the jurisdiction of the court and praying for appropriate action by the court in accordance with the provisions of this section. Upon the filing of such petition the court shall cause a summons to be issued requiring the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal, if known, to appear in court at the time and place named, which summons shall be served not less than fourteen days before the date of the hearing. If the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal is not known, notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given by publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the town in which the society took charge of such animal not less than fourteen days before the date of the hearing. Such court shall further give notice to the petitioner of the time and place of the hearing not less than fourteen days before the date of the hearing.

(c) If it appears from the allegations of the petition and other affirmations of fact accompanying the petition, or provided subsequent thereto, that there is reasonable cause to find that the animal's condition or the circumstances surrounding its care require that its custody be immediately assumed to safeguard its welfare, the court shall either (1) issue an order to the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal to show cause at such time as the court may designate why the court shall not vest in some suitable agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition or (2) issue an order vesting in some suitable agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition which hearing shall be held within ten days from the issuance of such order on the need for such temporary care and custody. The service of such orders may be made by any officer authorized by law to serve process, state police officer or indifferent person.

(d) (1) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is neglected or cruelly treated, it may vest ownership of the animal in any private or public agency which is permitted by law to care for neglected or cruelly treated animals or with any person found to be suitable or worthy of such responsibility by the court.

(2) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed, the court may order that such animal be humanely destroyed.

(3) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is not neglected or cruelly treated, it may cause the animal to be returned to its owner or owners or person having responsibility for its care or, if such owner or owners or person is unknown or unwilling to resume caring for such animal, it may vest ownership of the animal in any private or public agency or person found to be suitable or worthy of such responsibility.

(e) Unless the court finds that the animal is not neglected or cruelly treated, the expense incurred by the society in providing proper food, shelter and care to an animal it has taken charge of under subsection (a) of this section and the expense incurred by an agency or person in providing temporary care and custody to an animal under subsection (c) of this section shall be paid by the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal and the society or such agency or person shall have a lien upon such animal for such expense.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2920; 1958 Rev., § 17-27; 1988 P.A. 88-325, § 3; 1992, P.A. 92-242, § 1.)


§ 29-108f. Repealed. (1992, P.A. 92-242, § 2.)

 

§ 29-108g. Destruction of animal in the charge of the society

Any agent or officer of the Connecticut Humane Society may lawfully take charge of and humanely destroy, or cause to be humanely destroyed, any abandoned, lost, strayed or homeless animal or animal unsuitable for adoption in his charge if upon examination a licensed veterinarian certifies, in writing, or if two persons called to view the animal in the presence of an agent or officer of the society find that the animal is injured, disabled or diseased past recovery, infirm or unsuitable for adoption, or if the owner consents in writing to such destruction. In the absence of such certification or finding or redemption by the owner, the society may, after five days, humanely destroy any animal in its charge pursuant to this section. In lieu of such destruction or redemption by the owner, the society may, in its discretion and without liability, deliver such animal, after five days, to a person other than the owner.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2922; 1958 Rev., § 17-29; 1988, P.A. 88-325, § 5.)


§ 29-108h. Use of high altitude euthanasia devices prohibited

No person or organization shall use any high altitude device for the purpose of destroying any animal, and on or after January 1, 1981, no person or organization shall possess any high altitude device for such purpose.

CREDIT(S)

(1958 Rev., § 17-29a; 1979, P.A. 79-155, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1980.)


§ 29-108i. Officers and agents to have certificates or badges

Officers and agents of said society shall be provided by said society with certificates that they are such officers or agents, in such form as the directors of said society may choose, or with badges bearing the name or seal of said society, and shall, if requested, show such certificates or badges when acting officially.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 2923; 1958 Rev., § 17-30.)

 

Title 22. Agriculture. Domestic Animals
Chapter 435. Dogs and Other Companion Animals. Kennels and Pet Shops

§ 22-327. Definitions

As used in this chapter:

(1) “Animal” means any brute creature, including, but not limited to, dogs, cats, monkeys, guinea pigs, hamsters, rabbits, birds and reptiles;

(2) “Chief Animal Control Officer”, “Assistant Chief Animal Control Officer” and “animal control officer” mean, respectively, the Chief State Animal Control Officer, the Assistant Chief State Animal Control Officer and a state animal control officer appointed under section 22-328;

(3) “Commercial kennel” means a kennel maintained for boarding or grooming dogs or cats, and includes, but is not limited to, any veterinary hospital which boards or grooms dogs or cats for nonmedical purposes;

(4) “Commissioner” means the Commissioner of Agriculture;

(5) “Grooming facility” means any place, other than a commercial kennel, which is maintained as a business where dogs are groomed;

(6) “Keeper” means any person, other than the owner, harboring or having in his possession any dog;

(7) “Kennel” means one pack or collection of dogs which are kept under one ownership at a single location and are bred for show, sport or sale;

(8) “Municipal animal control officer” means any such officer appointed under the provisions of section 22-331;

(9) “Pet shop” means any place at which animals not born and raised on the premises are kept for the purpose of sale to the public;

(10) “Poultry” means all domestic fowl and any pheasants or other game birds securely confined and lawfully owned and possessed by any person under the provisions of section 26-40;

(11) “Regional animal control officer” and “assistant regional animal control officer” means a regional Connecticut animal control officer and an assistant regional Connecticut animal control officer appointed under the provisions of section 22-331a;

(12) “Training facility” means any place, other than a commercial kennel or grooming facility, which is maintained as a business where dogs are trained.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 3374; 1949, Supp. § 709b; 1953, Supp. §§ 1370c, 1812d; 1959, P.A. 637, § 2; 1961, P.A. 67; 1963, P.A. 613, § 1; 1969, P.A. 81, § 1; 1969, P.A. 423, § 1; 1971, P.A. 872, § 446; 1972, P.A. 180, § 1; 1977, P.A. 77-314, § 1; 1982 P.A. 82-91, § 14, eff. July 1, 1982; 1991, P.A. 91-46, § 10, eff. April 12, 1991; 1991, P.A. 91-59, § 1; 1993, P.A. 93-435, § 29, eff. June 28, 1993; 1998, P.A. 98-12, § 3, eff. July 1, 1998; 2003, June 30 Sp.Sess., P.A. 03-6, § 146, eff. July 1, 2004; 2004, P.A. 04-189, § 1, eff. June 1, 2004.)

 

§ 22-327a. Omitted in Gen.St., Rev. to 1972

 

§ 22-328. Enforcement. Animal control officers. Expenses

(a) The commissioner is authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter and chapters 436 [FN1] and 436a [FN2] and the regulations adopted thereunder in accordance with the provisions of such chapters and chapter 54. [FN3]

(b) The commissioner shall appoint, as provided by chapter 67: [FN4] (1) A Chief State Animal Control Officer; (2) an Assistant Chief State Animal Control Officer, who shall perform all the duties of the Chief State Animal Control Officer in such officer's absence or inability, or at such officer's direction; and (3) not more than twelve state animal control officers and as many regional animal control officers and assistants as may be deemed necessary to insure, subject to the commissioner's direction, the enforcement of the provisions of this chapter and chapters 436 and 436a and the enforcement of regulations adopted by the commissioner. The expenses incurred in the administration of this chapter and chapters 436 and 436a shall be paid from dog funds in the custody of the State Treasurer which have been received from the several municipalities and from the commissioner for the same fiscal year as the expenses are incurred.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 3375; 1953, Supp. § 1371c; 1955, Supp. § 1813d; 1963, P.A. 613, § 2; 1965, Feb. Sp.Sess., P.A. 143, § 1, eff. June 7, 1965; 1969, P.A. 81, § 2; 1982, P.A. 82-119, § 1; 1993, P.A. 93-435, § 30, eff. June 28, 1993; 1998, P.A. 98-12, § 4, eff. July 1, 1998.)

[FN1] C.G.S.A. § 22-368 et seq.
[FN2] C.G.S.A. § 22-380a et seq.
[FN3] C.G.S.A. § 4-166 et seq.
[FN4] C.G.S.A. § 5-193 et seq.


§ 22-329. Prevention of cruelty to dogs and other animals

The commissioner, the Chief Animal Control Officer, any animal control officer, any municipal animal control officer or any law enforcement officer may interfere to prevent any act of cruelty upon any dog or other animal, and any person who interferes with or obstructs or resists the commissioner or any such officer in the discharge of such duty shall be fined not more than fifty dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 3376; 1953, Supp. §§ 1372c, 1814d; 1969, P.A. 81, § 4; 1991, P.A. 91-59, § 2; 1993, P.A. 93-435, § 31, eff. June 28, 1993; 1995, P.A. 95-358, § 1; 1998, P.A. 98-12, § 5, eff. July 1, 1998.)

 

§ 22-329a. Seizure and custody of neglected or cruelly treated animals. Animal abuse cost recovery account

(a) The Chief Animal Control Officer, any animal control officer or any municipal or regional animal control officer may take physical custody of any animal when such animal control officer has reasonable cause to believe that such animal is in imminent harm and is neglected or is cruelly treated in violation of section 22-366, 22-415, 53-247, 53-248, 53-249, 53-249a, 53-250, 53-251 or 53-252, and, not later than ninety-six hours after taking physical custody, shall proceed as provided in subsection (c) of this section, except that if, in the opinion of a licensed veterinarian or the State Veterinarian, at any time after physical custody of such animal is taken, such animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed immediately, such officer may humanely destroy or cause such animal to be humanely destroyed.

(b) The Chief Animal Control Officer, any animal control officer or any municipal or regional animal control officer may take physical custody of any animal upon issuance of a warrant finding probable cause that such animal is neglected or is cruelly treated in violation of section 22-366, 22-415, 53-247, 53-248, 53-249, 53-249a, 53-250, 53-251 or 53-252, and shall thereupon proceed as provided in subsection (c) of this section except that if, in the opinion of a licensed veterinarian or the State Veterinarian, at any time after physical custody of such animal is taken, such animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed immediately, such officer may humanely destroy or cause such animal to be humanely destroyed.

(c) Such officer shall file with the superior court which has venue over such matter or with the superior court for the judicial district of Hartford at Hartford a verified petition plainly stating such facts of neglect or cruel treatment as to bring such animal within the jurisdiction of the court and praying for appropriate action by the court in accordance with the provisions of this section. Upon the filing of such petition, the court shall cause a summons to be issued requiring the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal, if known, to appear in court at the time and place named.

(d) If physical custody of an animal has been taken pursuant to subsection (a) or (b) of this section and it appears from the allegations of the petition filed pursuant to subsection (c) of this section and other affirmations of fact accompanying the petition, or provided subsequent thereto, that there is reasonable cause to find that the animal's condition or the circumstances surrounding its care require that temporary care and custody be immediately assumed to safeguard its welfare, the court shall either (1) issue an order to show cause why the court should not vest in some suitable state, municipal or other public or private agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition, or (2) issue an order vesting in some suitable state, municipal or other public or private agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition. A hearing on the order issued by the court pursuant to subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection shall be held not later than fourteen days after the issuance of such order. The service of such order may be made by any officer authorized by law to serve process, state police officer or indifferent person and shall be served not less than forty-eight hours prior to the date and time of such hearing. If the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal is not known, notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given by publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the town in which such officer took physical custody of such animal not less than forty-eight hours prior to the date and time of such hearing.

(e) If physical custody of an animal has not been taken pursuant to subsection (a) or (b) of this section, and the Chief Animal Control Officer, any animal control officer or any municipal or regional animal control officer has reasonable cause to believe that an animal is neglected or is cruelly treated in violation of section 22-366, 22-415, 53-247, 53-248, 53-249, 53-249a, 53-250, 53-251 or 53-252, such animal control officer may file a petition with the superior court which has venue over such matter or with the superior court for the judicial district of Hartford at Hartford, plainly stating such facts of neglect or cruel treatment as to bring the animal within the jurisdiction of the court and praying for appropriate action by the court to ensure the welfare of the animal including, but not limited to, physical removal and temporary care and custody of the animal, authorization of an animal control officer or a licensed veterinarian to provide care for the animal on site, vesting of ownership of the animal, the posting of a bond in accordance with subsection (f) of this section and the assessment of costs in accordance with subsection (h) of this section. Upon the filing of such petition, the court shall cause a summons for an order to show cause to be issued requiring the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal, if known, to appear in court at the time and place named. If the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal is not known, notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given by publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the town where the animal is located not less than forty-eight hours prior to the date and time of the hearing. If it appears from the allegations of the petition filed pursuant to this subsection and other affirmations of fact accompanying the petition, or provided subsequent thereto, that there is reasonable cause to find that the animal's condition or the circumstances surrounding its care require the immediate removal of the animal from the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal to safeguard its welfare, the court shall issue an order vesting in some suitable state, municipal or other public or private agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition which hearing shall be held not later than ten days after the issuance of such order for such temporary care and custody. The service of such order may be made by any officer authorized by law to serve process, state police officer or indifferent person and shall be served not less than forty-eight hours prior to the date and time of such hearing.

(f) If the court issues an order vesting the animal's temporary care and custody in some suitable state, municipal or other public or private agency or person, the owner or owners shall either relinquish ownership of the animal or post a surety bond or cash bond with the agency or person in whom the animal's temporary care and custody was vested. The surety bond or cash bond shall be in the amount of five hundred dollars and shall secure payment for the reasonable expenses of the agency or person having temporary care and custody of the animal in caring and providing for such animal until the court makes a finding as to the animal's disposition under subsection (g) of this section. The requirement that a bond be posted may be waived if such owner provides satisfactory evidence that such owner is indigent and unable to pay for such bond.

(g) (1) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is neglected or cruelly treated, it shall vest ownership of the animal in any state, municipal or other public or private agency which is permitted by law to care for neglected or cruelly treated animals or with any person found to be suitable or worthy of such responsibility by the court.

(2) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed, the court may order that such animal be humanely destroyed.

(3) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is not neglected or cruelly treated, it may cause the animal to be returned to its owner or owners or person having responsibility for its care or, if such owner or owners or person is unknown or unwilling to resume caring for such animal, it may vest ownership of the animal in any state, municipal or other public or private agency or person found to be suitable or worthy of such responsibility.

(4) If the court makes a finding under subdivision (1) or (2) of this subsection less than thirty days after the issuance of an order of temporary care and custody and the owner of the animal has posted a bond, the agency or person with whom the bond was posted shall return the balance of such bond, if any, to the owner. The amount of the bond to be returned to the owner shall be calculated at the rate of fifteen dollars per day per animal or twenty-five dollars per day per animal if the animal is a horse or other large livestock for the number of days less than thirty that such agency or person has not had temporary care and custody of the animal less any veterinary costs and expenses incurred for the welfare of the animal.

(5) If the court makes a finding under subdivision (3) of this subsection after the issuance of an order of temporary care and custody and the owner of the animal has posted a bond, the agency or person with whom the bond was posted shall return such bond to such owner.

(h) If the court finds that the animal is neglected or cruelly treated, the expenses incurred by the state or a municipality in providing proper food, shelter and care to an animal it has taken custody of under subsection (a) or (b) of this section and the expenses incurred by any state, municipal or other public or private agency or person in providing temporary care and custody pursuant to an order vesting temporary care and custody, calculated at the rate of fifteen dollars per day per animal or twenty-five dollars per day per animal if the animal is a horse or other large livestock until the date ownership is vested pursuant to subdivision (1) of subsection (g) of this section shall be paid by the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal. In addition, all veterinary costs and expenses incurred for the welfare of the animal that are not covered by the per diem rate shall be paid by the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the animal.

(i) If the court vests ownership of the animal in the Commissioner of Agriculture or a municipality, the commissioner or the municipality may conduct or participate in a public auction of the animal under such conditions the commissioner or the municipality deems necessary or the commissioner or the municipality may consign the animal to an auction or sell the animal through an open advertised bid process whereby bid price and demonstration of sufficient knowledge and ability to care for such animal are factors for the commissioner's or municipality's consideration. All moneys collected from the sale of animals sold by the Commissioner of Agriculture through such open advertised bid process shall be deposited in the “animal abuse cost recovery account” established in subsection (j) of this section. All moneys collected from the sale of animals sold by a municipality through such open advertised bid process shall be deposited by the town treasurer or other fiscal officer in the town's general fund. In a case where rehabilitative or special care of such animal is required, the commissioner or the municipality may vest ownership of such animal in an individual or a public or private nonprofit animal rescue or adoption organization which annually places ten or more animals in private homes as pets.

(j) There is established a separate, nonlapsing account within the General Fund, to be known as the “animal abuse cost recovery account”. All moneys collected from sales at public auction of animals seized by the Department of Agriculture pursuant to this section shall be deposited into the account. Deposits of moneys may be made into the account from public or private sources, including, but not limited to, the federal government or municipal governments.

(k) Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, any moneys received by the Department of Agriculture pursuant to subsection (j) of this section shall be deposited in the General Fund and credited to the animal abuse cost recovery account. The account shall be available to the Commissioner of Agriculture for the purpose of the housing, care and welfare of any animal seized by the department, until final disposition of such animal. Nothing in this section shall prevent the commissioner from obtaining or using funds from sources other than the account for the housing, care and welfare of any animal seized by the department pursuant to this section.

CREDIT(S)

(1995, P.A. 95-358, § 2; 1998, P.A. 98-12, § 6, eff. July 1, 1998; 2003, June 30 Sp.Sess., P.A. 03-6, § 146, eff. July 1, 2004; 2004, P.A. 04-145, § 1, eff. May 21, 2004; 2004, P.A. 04-189, § 1, eff. June 1, 2004; 2007, P.A. 07-230, § 1.)

 

§ 22-330. Authority of officers issuing summons

The commissioner, the Chief Animal Control Officer and any animal control officer in any part of the state, any regional animal control officer in the territory to which he is assigned and any municipal animal control officer in the municipality for which he has been appointed may arrest any person and may issue a written complaint and summons in furtherance thereof for any violation of any law relating to dogs or to any domestic animal in the same manner police officers or constables may exercise in their respective jurisdictions.

CREDIT(S)

(1949 Rev., § 3377; 1953, Supp. §§ 1373c, 1815d; 1963, P.A. 613, § 3; 1969, P.A. 81, § 4; 1976, P.A. 76-381, § 35; 1991, P.A. 91-59, § 3; 1993, P.A. 93-435, § 32, eff. June 28, 1993; 1998, P.A. 98-12, § 7, eff. July 1, 1998; 2000, P.A. 00-99, § 63, eff. Dec. 1, 2000.)

 

 



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