Dogs: Related Statutes

Statute by categorysort descending Citation Summary
IN - Licenses - (Repealed by P.L.162-2006, SEC.49.) Unlicensed dog as public nuisance; impounding; reclaiming; disposal of dogs I.C. 15-5-9-14 (Repealed by P.L.162-2006, SEC.49.)

This Indiana statute provides that on and after the fifteenth day of June of each year every dog on which the tax has not been paid, is declared to be a public nuisance and shall be impounded by any law enforcement official.  The dogs are then held for up to 20 days whereupon the owner may recover the dog by paying the fee and a reasonable daily fine.  Any unclaimed dog may be sold or destroyed.

IN - Property - (Repealed by P.L.162-2006, SEC.49.) - Dogs as Personal Property for Taxation I.C. 15-5-10-1 (Repealed by P.L.162-2006, SEC.49.)

Dogs are considered personal property in Indiana (repealed).

KS - Abandon - Chapter 47. Livestock and Domestic Animals. K. S. A. 47-835

This Kansas statute provides that any animal placed in the custody of a licensed veterinarian that is unclaimed by its owner for a period of more than ten (10) days after written notice by registered or certified mail is given, shall be deemed to be abandoned and may be turned over to the nearest humane society, or dog pound or disposed of as the custodian may deem proper.  The giving of notice to the owner of record immunizes the veterinarian from liability.

KS - Assistance Animal - Consolidated Assistance Animal Laws KS ST 39-1101 to 1113; 21-6416; 8-1542

The following statutes comprise the state's relevant assistance animal and guide dog laws.

KS - Dogs - Consolidated Dog Laws KS ST § 47-645 - 646a; 47-835; 47-1701 - 1737; 79-1301; 32-954

These Kansas statutes comprise the state's dog laws.  Among the provisions include licensing of dogs, specific laws that outline the care of dogs in kennel situations, and laws pertaining to dogs who endanger livestock.

KY - Assistance Animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws KY ST § 525.010 - 220; 258.500, 258.991; 189.575

The following statutes comprise the state's relevant assistance animal and guide dog laws.

KY - Dangerous - REPEALED - Quarantine of dogs in case of excessive damage to livestock, poultry, or domestic game birds; destru KY ST § 258.345

This Kentucky statute provides that, when the inhabitants of any city, or county, have suffered an excessive amount of damage to livestock or poultry or domestic game birds by dogs, a petition may be presented to the commissioner, signed by twenty (20) or more of such inhabitants who are owners of livestock or poultry, alleging such excessive damage and requesting that a quarantine be placed on all dogs within the limits of such city, or county.  It then becomes unlawful for a dog not engaged in hunting to run at large in the quarantine area.

KY - Dog Laws (also includes cats & ferrets) - Kentucky Consolidated Dog Laws (License, Impound, Bite, etc.) KY ST § 258.005 - 991; 150.390

These Kentucky statutes comprise the state's Dog Laws, which were amended significantly in 2005.  Included are all vaccination, licensing, animal control provisions, and the relevant dog bite statutes.  Under Section 258.235, any person may kill or seize any dog which he sees in the act of pursuing or wounding any livestock, or wounding or killing poultry, or attacking human beings, whether or not such dog bears the license tag required by the provisions of this chapter. There shall be no liability on such person in damages or otherwise for killing, injuring from an attempt to kill, or for seizing the dog.  That same section also comprises the state's new strict liability law for dog bites.  Under Sec. 235(4), any owner whose dog is found to have caused damage to a person, livestock, or other property shall be responsible for that damage.

KY - Impound - Chapter 258. Animal Control and Protection. KY ST § 258.215

This Kentucky statute provides that peace officers, dog wardens, or animal control officers shall seize and impound any dog which does not bear a proper license tag or other legible identification which is found running at large.  Interestingly, if an officer after diligent effort to do so, should fail to seize the dog, it is his or her duty to destroy the dog by any reasonable and humane means.  The statute specifically exempts actively engaged hunting dogs from the "loose dog" prohibition.

KY - Impound - Chapter 258. Animal Control and Protection. KY ST § 258.265

This Kentucky statute provides that an owner shall exercise proper care and control of his dog to prevent the dog from violating any local government nuisance ordinance. Any peace officer or animal control officer may seize or destroy any dog found running at large between the hours of sunset and sunrise and unaccompanied and not under the control of its owner or handler. A peace officer or animal control officer shall be under a duty to make a fair and reasonable effort to determine whether any dog found at large between sunset and sunrise is a hound or other hunting dog which has become lost temporarily.

KY - Impound - Confinement and destruction of dog found to have caused loss or damage to livestock, persons, or poultry; harbore KY ST § 258.325 (REPEALED 2004) This Kentucky statute provides that the owner of any dog or dogs having caused loss or damage to any livestock or poultry or person is definitely and conclusively shown or if written complaint is filed and if such charge is proven by investigation on the part of the department, the commissioner may notify the owner or keeper of such dog to immediately destroy the dog.  It then becomes unlawful and a violation of this chapter for such owner, or keeper to permit or cause such dog, while alive, to leave or to be removed from such premises.  The destroying of such dogs shall not remove the liability of the owner for such damage done by his dog.
KY - Ordinances - Chapter 258. Animal Control and Protection. KY ST § 258.195

This Kentucky statute set up in 1954 the position of county dog warden.  Additionally in 1955, each county was to establish and maintain a dog pound as a means of facilitating and administration of this chapter.  It also provides that cities, urban-county governments, or charter county governments may enter into agreements with the counties for the enforcement of the county's ordinances.

KY - Ordinances - CHAPTER 258. DOGS. KY ST § 258.365 This Kentucky statute provides that nothing in this chapter related to state regulation of dogs shall be construed to prohibit or limit the right of any city to pass or enforce any ordinance with respect to the regulation of dogs, the provisions of which are not inconsistent with the provisions of this chapter.
KY - Property - Chapter 258. Animal Control and Protection. KY ST § 258.245

This Kentucky statute provides that all licensed dogs are personal property and can thus be subject to larceny.  It further states that it is unlawful (except as otherwise provided by law) for anyone, including a peace officer, to kill or attempt to kill a licensed dog.

LA - Assistance Animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws LA R.S. 46:1951 - 1959; LA R.S. 21:52; LA R.S. 32:217

The following comprise Louisiana's assistance animal/guide dog laws.

LA - Cruelty - Consolidated Cruelty Statutes LSA-R.S. 14:102 - .27

These Louisiana statutes comprise the state's anti-cruelty provisions.  The term "cruel" is defined in the first section every act or failure to act whereby unjustifiable physical pain or suffering is caused or permitted.  The crime of cruelty to animals is subdivided into simple cruelty or aggravated cruelty. Simple cruelty occurs when a person intentionally or with criminal negligence overdrives, overloads, drives when overloaded, or overworks, torments, cruelly beats, or unjustifiably injures, or, having charge, custody, or possession of any animal, either as owner or otherwise, unjustifiably fails to provide any living animal with proper food, proper drink, proper shelter, or proper veterinary care.

LA - Dangerous - Louisiana Dangerous Dog & Dog Bite Laws LA R.S. 14:102.14; L.A. R.S. § 2771 - 2778

These Louisiana statutory sections provide the state's animal control and dangerous dog laws.  A dog becomes dangerous when (1) unprovoked, on two separate occasions within the prior thirty-six-month period, engages in any behavior that requires a defensive action by any person to prevent bodily injury when the person and the dog are off the property of the owner of the dog; (2) any dog which, when unprovoked, bites a person causing an injury; or (3) any dog which, when unprovoked, on two separate occasions within the prior thirty-six-month period, has killed, seriously bitten, inflicted injury, or otherwise caused injury to a domestic animal off the property of the owner of the dog.  It is unlawful for any person to own a dangerous dog without properly restraining or confining the dog.  Any citizen or officer may kill any dangerous or vicious dog, and no citizen or officer shall be liable for damages or to prosecution by reason of killing any dangerous or vicious dog.  The section also provides laws on licensing, vaccination, and prohibitions on dogs running at large.

LA - Dog - Consolidated Dog Laws LA R.S. 2451 - 2778; LA R.S. 56:124.1; LSA-R.S. 56:124.1, 141

These statutes comprise Louisiana's dog laws.  Included among the provisions are dangerous dog laws, impoundment provisions, and the relevant licensing requirements.

LA - Dog Bite - Art. 2321. Damage caused by animals. LA C.C. Art. 2321

This Louisiana civil code statute provides that an owner of any animal is liable for damages caused by that animal only upon a showing that he or she knew or should have known that his or her animal's behavior would cause damage, that the damage could have been prevented by the exercise of reasonable care, and that he or she failed to exercise such reasonable care.  However, the owner of a dog is strictly liable for injuries to persons or property caused by the dog and which the owner could have prevented and which did not result from the injured person's provocation of the dog.

LA - Dog Dangerous - Chapter 1. Criminal Code. LA R.S. 14:102.14

This Louisiana statute defines a "dangerous dog" as any dog which when unprovoked, on two separate occasions within the prior thirty-six-month period, engages in any behavior that requires a defensive action by any person to prevent bodily injury when the person and the dog are off the property of the owner of the dog; or any dog which, when unprovoked, bites a person causing an injury; or any dog which, when unprovoked, on two separate occasions within the prior thirty-six-month period, has killed, seriously bitten, inflicted injury, or otherwise caused injury to a domestic animal off the property of the owner of the dog.  It is unlawful for any person to own a dangerous dog without properly restraining or confining the dog.

LA - Leash - Chapter 18. Animals Running at Large LA R.S. 3:2771

This Louisiana law states that no person shall permit any dog in his or her possession to run at large on any unenclosed land, or trespass upon any enclosed or unenclosed lands of another.

LA - Leash - Chapter 23. Louisiana White Cane Law. LA R.S. 46:1956

This Louisiana leash law provides that  “any person who purposely or negligently injures an assistance dog or any owner of a dog who allows that dog to injure an assistance dog because he fails to control or leash the dog shall also be guilty of a misdemeanor and fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both.”  That person shall also be liable for any injuries to the assistance dog and, if necessary, the replacement and compensation for the loss of the assistance dog and attorney fees.

LA - Ordinances - CHAPTER 18. ANIMALS RUNNING AT LARGE. LA R.S. 3:2731

This Louisiana statute provides that the governing bodies of all parishes and municipalities may impose license taxes on all dogs, enact ordinances for the regulation of dogs running at large, and maintain pounds for the impounding of dogs.

MA - Assistance Animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws MA ST 90 § 14A; MA ST 272 § 98A; MA ST 272 § 85B; MA ST 129 § 1; MA ST 129 § 39C, D, F, § 43

The following statutes comprise the state's relevant assistance animal and guide dog laws.

MA - Dog - Consolidated Dog Laws M.G.L.A. 2 § 14; M.G.L.A. 128A § 14E; M.G.L.A. 266 § 47; M.G.L.A. 140 § 136A - § 175; M.G.L.A. 129 § 39G; M.G.L.A. 131 § 20, 21, 21A, 82

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

MA - Dog Ordinances - CHAPTER 140. LICENSES. M.G.L.A. 140 § 173

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

MA - Dog Ordinances - CHAPTER 140. LICENSES. M.G.L.A. 140 § 173A

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 - Exotic Pets - Chapter 131. Inland Fisheries and Game and Other Natural Resources. MA ST 131 § 77A Massachusetts bans hybrid animals, those offspring of mating between a domestic animal and its wild counterpart, usually wolves and dogs. No individual may possess or own a hybrid as a pet.
MA - Initiatives - 2008 Question 3 (dog racing) Question 3 (2008) This proposed law would prohibit any dog racing or racing meeting in Massachusetts where any form of betting or wagering on the speed or ability of dogs occurs. The State Racing Commission would be prohibited from accepting or approving any application or request for racing dates for dog racing. Any person violating the proposed law could be required to pay a civil penalty of not less than $20,000 to the Commission. All existing parts of the chapter of the state's General Laws concerning dog and horse racing meetings would be interpreted as if they did not refer to dogs. These changes would take effect January 1, 2010. The measure was approved by a margin of 65% to 35 %.
MA - Initiatives - Question 3, 2000 (dog racing) Question 3 (2000) This Massachusetts ballot question asked voters in 2000 whether they wanted to prohibit in Massachusetts any dog racing where any form of betting or wagering on the speed or ability of dogs occurs. Any person violating the proposed law could be required to pay a civil penalty of not less than $20,000 to the State Racing Commission. The question failed with 49% voting "yes" and 51% voting "no" on the question.
MA - Leash - § 174B. Restraint of dogs in public highway rest areas; penalty MA ST 140 § 174B

This Massachusetts law states that whoever is the owner or keeper of a dog shall restrain said dog by a chain or leash when in an officially designated public highway rest area. Whoever violates the provisions of this section shall be punished by a fine of not more than $100.

MA - Lost Property - Chapter 134. Lost Goods and Stray Beasts MA ST 134 § 1 - 7

This section comprises Massachusetts' Lost Goods and Stray Beasts Act.

MA - Ordinances - By-laws and ordinances relative to regulation of dogs MA ST 140 § 147A This Massachusetts statute provides that any city or town that accepts the provisions of this statutory section is empowered to enact by-laws and ordinances relative to the regulation of dogs.  These areas may relate to, but not be limited to dog licensing, establishing dog fees, disposition of fees, appointment of dog officers, kennel licensing and regulations, procedures for the investigation of and reimbursement for damage caused by dogs, restraining of dogs and establishing penalties for a breach. This section was repealed in 2012.
MD - Assistance Animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws MD Code, Local Government, § 13-104; MD Code, Human Services, § 7-701 - 709; MD Code, Transportation, § 21-511

The following statutes comprise Maryland's relevant assistance animal/guide dog laws.

MD - Bite - Maryland Dangerous Dog Laws MD Code, Criminal Law, § 10-619

This Maryland statute outlines what is a "Dangerous dog."  As defined by statute, it is a dog that, without provocation, has killed or inflicted severe injury on a person, or it is a potentially dangerous dog that bites a person, when not on its owner's real property, kills or inflicts severe injury on a domestic animal, or attacks without provocation.  An owner of a dangerous dog must keep the dog securely enclosed on his or her property or must muzzle and restrain the dog.  A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and on conviction is subject to a fine not exceeding $2,500.

MD - Dogs - Consolidated Dog Laws MD Code, Local Government, § 13-101 - 134; MD Code, Transportation, § 21-1004.1; MD Code, Natural Resources, § 10-413, 416, 701, 703, and 807; MD Code, Public Safety, § 2-313; MD Code, Health - General, § 18-312 - 321; MD Code, General Provisions, § 7-304

These statutes comprise Maryland's dog laws.  Maryland is unique in that the state law governs the specific licensing and other regulations certain counties may adopt or enforce.  Also included are the state rabies provisions and even the law that designates the state dog (the Chesapeake Bay retriever).

MD - Licenses - Article 24. Political Subdivisions--Miscellaneous Provisions. MD Code, Local Government, § 13-115 (Formerly cited MD CODE, Art. 24, § 11-510 ) Repealed in 2013. This Maryland statute provides that any dog found running at large without the proper license tag attached is considered a nuisance and is subject to seizure, detention and destruction.  When the dog warden is not able to catch a dog running at large without a license tag, the dog may be shot or otherwise killed.  The County Commissioners may provide by ordinance that owners of dogs may not permit the dog, whether licensed or unlicensed, to run at large, after a petition signed by a majority of residents has been submitted.  Dogs seized under this provision are kept for 72 hours; thereafter, the owner loses ownership rights and is subject to sale after an additional holding period.  Any dog seized and not redeemed within 120 hours from time of its seizure may be killed by the dog warden or one of his or her duly authorized deputies.
MD - Ordinances - Article 24. Political Subdivisions--Miscellaneous Provisions. MD Code, Local Government, § 13-117; MD Code, Local Government, § 13-118; MD Code, Local Government, § 13-121(Formerly cited MD CODE, Art. 24, § 11-511) This Maryland statutory section only applies to Carroll County and Frederick County.  It provides that th e county commissioners, by ordinance, may provide for a comprehensive system for the regulation of domestic animals, including dogs, and wild animals held in captivity, within the county, including licensing and control.  Also included are provisions for the impoundment and disposal of unlicensed or dangerous dogs and provisions for the regulation of persons who own or keep any animal which disturbs the peace.
MD - Ordinances -§ 236A. Washington County; animal control ordinance MD Code, Local Government, § 13-122; MD Code, Local Government, § 13-132 (Formerly cited as MD CODE, Art. 25, § 236A) This Maryland statute provides that the County Commissioners for Washington County may adopt an animal control ordinance.  This may include provisions to hold public hearings to decide citations, complaints, and other controversies arising under the animal control ordinance.  Ordinances may also include provisions for the control of rabid animals and t he disposition of uncontrolled, vicious, and sick animals among other things.
MD - Pet Injuries, Damages - tle 11. Judgments. MD Code, Courts and Judicial Proceedings, § 11-110

This Maryland statute provides that the measure of damages for tortious injury or death to a pet is the market value of the pet before the injury, or the cost of veterinary care that does not exceed $7,500.

MD - Pet Sales - Pet Purchaser Protection MD Code, Business Regulation, § 19–701 to 19–707 This statute regulates retail pet stores that sell dogs. According to this statute, a purchaser is allowed remedies if, within two weeks after the purchase of a dog from a pet store, a veterinarian certifies that a dog suffers from or has died from a disease or illness that existed at the time of purchase. The purchaser may also be entitled to remedies if, within three months after the purchase of a dog from a pet store, a veterinarian certifies that the dog possesses or has died from a congenital or hereditary disease the adversely affects the dog's health, requires hospitalization or a non-elective surgical procedure. This statute also discusses a retail pet store's obligations to the purchaser, the limitations to obtaining these remedies, and provides the seller with an opportunity to contest the consumer's demand for remedies.
ME - Assistance Animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws ME ST T. 17 § 1311 - 1316; ME ST T. 26 §§ 1420-A - 1420-C; ME ST T. 7 § 3961-A; ME ST T. 5 § 4551 - 4555

The following statutes comprise the state's relevant assistance animal and guide dog laws.

ME - Dog, Dangerous - Maine Dangerous Dog Laws 7 M. R. S. A. § 3951 - 3953; 7 M. R. S. A. § 3961 - 3964; 7 M. R. S. A. § 3907

This Maine statutory sections outlines the state's dangerous dog laws.  It first provides that any person may lawfully kill a dog if necessary to protect that person, another person or a domesticated animal during the course of a sudden, unprovoked assault.  A person who owns or keeps a dangerous dog commits a civil violation for which the court shall adjudge a fine of not less than $250 and not more than $1,000.  The dog may be ordered to be muzzled, or euthanized if it has killed, maimed or inflicted serious bodily injury upon a person or has a history of a prior assault.  Notably, if a dog whose owner refuses or neglects to comply with the order wounds any person by a sudden assault or wounds or kills any domestic animal, the owner shall pay the person injured treble damages and costs to be recovered by a civil action.  The statute sets out the specific procedure for declaring a dog dangerous and the statutory definition of dangerous is also provided by reference to a companion statute.

ME - Dogs - Consolidated Dog Laws ME ST T.7 §3901 - 4163; ME ST T. 12 § 12707

These Maine statutes comprise the state's dog laws.  Among the provisions include licensing requirements, laws that determine the disposition of loose or dangerous dogs, and a chapter on the sale of dogs.

ME - Domestic Violence- Title 19-A. Domestic Relations. ME ST T. 19-A §§ 4006, 4007

This Maine law concerning personal protection orders in cases of abuse was amended in March of 2006 to include companion animals in protection orders.  The new language specifies that a court may enter an order directing the care, custody or control of any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept or held by either party or a minor child residing in the household. In 2013, the statute was amended to allow the court to enter an order directing the defendant to refrain from injuring or threatening to injure any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept or held by either party or a minor child residing in the household.

ME - Exotic Pets - Chapter 723. Facility Licenses. ME ST T. 7 § 3931-B (§ 3931-B. Repealed. Laws 2011, c. 100, § 13, eff. May 19, 2011)

This Maine statute outlines the requirements that apply to wolf hybrid kennels. A person who operates a wolf hybrid kennel must register with the department. The offspring of a wolf hybrid must be permanently identified prior to transferring ownership or care of the animal. Failure to comply with the provisions of this section results in a civil violation with a forfeiture not to exceed $1,000. (For other exotic pet laws in Maine, see Chapter 730-A. Breeding, Sale and Transportation of Small Mammals).

ME - Impound -Chapter 719. Uncontrolled Dogs. 7 M. R. S. A. § 3912

This Maine statute provides that an animal control officer shall seize, impound, or restrain a loose dog.  If ownership is unknown, the dog may be delivered to the local animal shelter where it can be treated as a stray.  If ownership is known, the officer must either deliver it to the owner or take it to an animal shelter.

ME - Lost Property - Chapter 21. Lost Goods and Stray Beasts. 33 M. R. S. A. § 1051 - 1060

This section comprises Maine's Lost Goods and Stray Beasts Act.

MI - Assistance animals - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws MCL 287.291 and MCL 750.50a, 750.502c; MCL 752.51a, 752.52, 752.61 - 63

The following statutes comprise the state's relevant assistance animal and guide dog laws.

MI - Cruelty, neglect - Chapter 750. Michigan Penal Code. The Michigan Penal Code. MCL 750.50

This statute sets out the Michigan duty of care for all vertebrate animals, including what define adequate food, water, and shelter. Also explained are the penalty and forfeiture provisions for violations of the statute. The exclusions under the statute include those animals used in hunting, fishing, trapping, horse racing, farming, zoos, and scientific research.  The 2008 amendments revise the penalties for harming animals and allow for consecutive sentencing.

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