Massachusetts

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MA - Equine Activity Liability Statute - Chapter 128. Agriculture.


This Massachusetts law provides that an equine activity sponsor, an equine professional, or any other person shall not be liable for an injury to or the death of a participant resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities.  The statute sets out several definitions related to equine activities, but specifically notes that the term "engage in an equine activity" shall not include being a spectator at an equine activity, except in cases where the spectator places himself in an unauthorized area or in immediate proximity to the equine activity. 

Liability is not limited by this statute where the equine professional knowingly provided faulty tack or equipment, failed to make reasonable and prudent efforts to determine the ability of the participant to engage safely in the equine activity, owns or otherwise is in lawful possession of the land or facilities upon which the participant sustained injuries because of a known, dangerous latent condition, or if he or she commits an act or omission that constitutes willful or wanton disregard for the safety of the participant or intentionally injures the participant. 

MA - Endangered Species - Chapter 131A. Massachusetts Endangered Species Act


This Massachusetts statute comprises the state's endangered species act.  "Endangered species", any species of plant or animal in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range including those species listed under the federal ESA.  The director shall conduct investigations and consult with the natural heritage and endangered species advisory committee in order to determine whether any species of plant or animal constitutes an endangered or threatened species or species of special concern.  Habitat alteration permits are required under this act when any person undertakes a project that may alter a significant portion of habitat.

MA - Domestic Violence - § 11. Possession, care and control of domesticated animal owned by persons involved in certain protecti


This Massachusetts law, effective October of 2012, allows the court to order the possession, care and control of any domesticated animal owned, possessed, leased, kept or held by either party or a minor child residing in the household to the plaintiff or petitioner in a no contact or restraining order. The court may order the defendant to refrain from abusing, threatening, taking, interfering with, transferring, encumbering, concealing, harming or otherwise disposing of such animal.

MA - Dog Ordinances - CHAPTER 140. LICENSES.


This Massachusetts statute provides the state law relative to violation of municipal by-laws or ordinances related to dog control.  Included are penalty provisions and appearance requirements.

MA - Dog Ordinances - CHAPTER 140. LICENSES.



This Massachusetts statute provides that a town may make additional ordinances or by-laws relative to the licensing and restraining of dogs.

MA - Dog - Consolidated Dog Laws

These Massachusetts statutes comprise the state's dog laws.  Among the provisions include licensing laws, dangerous dog laws, and rabies vaccination provisions.

MA - Disaster Planning - Massachusetts Emergency Animal Annex
MA - Cruelty, reporting - § 85. Department employees reporting animal cruelty, abuse or neglect; immunity from liability

This Massachusetts statute provides that a state employee acting within the scope of his or her employment, who has knowledge of or observes an animal whom he knows or reasonably suspects has been the victim of animal cruelty, abuse or neglect, may report it to the entities that investigate these reports or any local animal control. The statute describes how to make the report, timing to submit, and who can make the report if 2 or more employees witness the abuse.  The statute also makes clear that no person who makes a report shall be liable in any civil or criminal action if the report was made in good faith.

MA - Cruelty - Consolidated Cruelty Statutes


These Massachusetts laws contain the state's anti-cruelty provisions.  § 77 is the operative anti-cruelty statute and provides that whoever overdrives, overloads, drives when overloaded, overworks, tortures, torments, deprives of necessary sustenance, cruelly beats, mutilates or kills an animal, and whoever uses in a cruel or inhuman manner in a race, game, or contest, or in training, as lure or bait a live animal (except as bait in fishing), or knowingly and willfully authorizes or permits it to be subjected to unnecessary torture, suffering or cruelty of any kind shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than 7 years or imprisonment for not more than 2 1/2 years or by a fine of not more than $5,000, or by both such fine and imprisonment.  Other prohibitions include the dyeing of baby chicks, the docking of horse tails, and both felony and misdemeanor penalties for animal fighting, depending on conduct. In 2010, the state made non-medically necessary devocalization of dogs or cats illegal.

MA - Cat of commonwealth - Chapter 2. Arms, Great Seal and Other Emblems of the Commonwealth.


The Tabby cat shall be the official cat of the Massachusetts commonwealth.

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