Full Statute Name:  West's Annotated Code of Maryland. Agriculture. Title 2. Department of Agriculture. Subtitle 17. Animal Shelters

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Primary Citation:  MD Code, Agriculture, § 2-1701 - 1707 Country of Origin:  United States Last Checked:  February, 2018 Alternate Citation:  MD Code, Agriculture, § 2-1701 - 1707 Date Adopted:  2016
Summary: This chapter effective October 1, 2016 states that the intent is to enhance animal shelter services by promoting humane animal sheltering policies and strengthening community safety. Before January 1, 2017, an animal shelter shall establish a written veterinary care protocol for dogs and cats that is consistent with guidelines set forth in the most recent Association of Shelter Veterinarians' Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters. That same date, an animal shelter must post on the animal shelter's Web site or in a conspicuous location within the animal shelter's facility a written protocol for reclaiming animals from the animal shelter that includes the minimum holding period for stray animals, the hours of operation, the fees for reclaiming an animal, and the documentation/identification required for reclaiming. Violation of this subtitle results in a civil penalty of $500.
Statute Text: 

§ 2-1701. Animal shelter defined

§ 2-1702. Legislative finding and intent

§ 2-1703. Written veterinary care protocol for dogs and cats

§ 2-1704. Protocol for reclaiming animals and summary of intake and disposition data

§ 2-1705. Penalties

§ 2-1706. Regulations

§ 2-1707. Penalties

 

 

§ 2-1701. Animal shelter defined

In this subtitle, “animal shelter” means:

(1) A county or municipal animal control facility;

(2) An organization that contracts with a county or municipality for animal control; or

(3) An organization that shelters animals and has received a grant from the Spay/Neuter Fund under Subtitle 16 of this title during the previous year.

Credits
Added by Acts 2016, c. 267, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2016.



§ 2-1702. Legislative finding and intent

Finding

(a) The General Assembly finds that animal shelters perform an integral community service.

Intent

(b) It is the intent of the General Assembly to enhance animal shelter services by promoting humane animal sheltering policies and strengthening community safety.

Credits
Added by Acts 2016, c. 267, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2016.


§ 2-1703. Written veterinary care protocol for dogs and cats

In general

(a) On or before January 1, 2017, an animal shelter shall establish a written veterinary care protocol for dogs and cats that is consistent with guidelines set forth in the most recent Association of Shelter

Veterinarians' Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters with respect to:

(1) Basic care;

(2) Sanitation;

(3) Population management;

(4) Disease control and prevention;

(5) Behavioral health and mental well-being; and

(6) Euthanasia.

Contents

(b) The written veterinary care protocol shall include:

(1) Standards that are necessary to protect sheltered dogs' and cats' health, safety, and well-being; and

(2) A plan for:

(i) Quality of life enrichment;

(ii) Veterinary care;

(iii) Prevention and control of contagious and other diseases; and

(iv) Any other health and environmental factors that materially affect sheltered dogs' and cats' health, safety, and well-being.

Vicious or dangerous dogs and cats

(c) An animal shelter may disregard its written veterinary care protocol for a dog or cat that is deemed to be too vicious or dangerous to permit safe handling.

Updates

(d) An animal shelter shall update its written veterinary care protocol as necessary to reasonably accommodate any subsequent updates to the Association of Shelter Veterinarians' Guidelines for Standards of

Care in Animal Shelters.

Public availability

(e) On request, an animal shelter shall make its written veterinary care protocol available to the public and the Department.

Credits
Added by Acts 2016, c. 267, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2016.

 

§ 2-1704. Protocol for reclaiming animals and summary of intake and disposition data

On or before January 1, 2017, an animal shelter shall establish and make available to the public on the animal shelter's Web site or in a conspicuous location within the animal shelter's facility:

(1) A written protocol for reclaiming animals from the animal shelter that includes:

(i) The minimum holding period for stray animals;

(ii) The hours of operation during which an animal may be reclaimed by the animal's owner or caregiver;

(iii) The fees associated with reclaiming an animal; and

(iv) Any identification or documentation that must be provided to the animal shelter before an animal may be reclaimed; and

(2) An annual summary of intake and disposition data reported to the Department in accordance with § 2-1602 of this title.

Credits
Added by Acts 2016, c. 267, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2016.


§ 2-1705. Penalties

Civil penalty

(a) A person who violates this subtitle is subject to a civil penalty not exceeding $500.

Criminal penalties

(b) The criminal penalties under Title 12, Subtitle 1 of this article do not apply to this subtitle.

Credits
Added by Acts 2016, c. 267, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2016.

 

§ 2-1706. Regulations

On or before January 1, 2018, the Department shall adopt regulations to enforce this subtitle.

Credits
Added by Acts 2017, c. 409, § 2, eff. June 1, 2017.

 

§ 2-1707. Penalties

Civil penalty

(a) A person who violates this subtitle is subject to a civil penalty not exceeding $500.

Criminal penalties

(b) The criminal penalties under Title 12, Subtitle 1 of this article do not apply to this subtitle.

Credits
Added as Agriculture § 2-1705 by Acts 2016, c. 267, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2016. Renumbered as Agriculture § 2-1707 by Acts 2017, c. 409, § 1, eff. June 1, 2017.

 

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