Horses: Related Statutes
|Statute by category||Citation||Summary|
|DC - Horses - Chapter 20. Horse-Drawn Carriages.||DC CODE § 8-2001 - 2013||
This DC regulation makes it unlawful to operate a horse-drawn carriage trade without a license and an ID card. The regulations forbid certain types of bits and require that each horse wear a diaper. Horses may not be worked or driven for more than 8 hours a day. Horses must be rested, provided with food and water. A violation of the regulations may result in a fine of $300 (1st offense). A serious intentional injury to the horse by neglect or inhumane treatment shall be fined up to $2,500.
|Connecticut General Statutes 1918: Chapter 329: Section 6268||Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6268 (1918)||Section 6268 of Chapter 329 from the 1918 General Laws of Connecticut covers the unlawful injury to certain property of another. Specifically, the statute states the punishment for hurting, maiming, poisoning anther's cattle, ox, horse, and mule.|
|SC - Equine Activity Liability - Article 7. Equine Liability Immunity.||Code 1976 § 47-9-710 - 730||This South Carolina section provides that an equine activity sponsor or an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant resulting from an inherent risk of equine activity. The statute also requires the visible displaying of warning signs that alert participants to the limitation of liability by law. Failure to comply with the requirements concerning warning signs and notices provided in this section prevents an equine activity sponsor or equine professional from invoking the privileges of immunity provided by this article.|
|CA - Historical - General Laws of 1913: Title 14: Section 596-599f||Cal. Penal Code §§ 597 - 599f (1913)||The General Laws of California from 1913, title 14, covers Malicious Mischief which includes sections concerning: Cruelty to Animals, Poisoning of Cattle, killing of birds in cemeteries and killing of gulls or cranes. The Cruelty to Animal section describes laws concerning horses, abandoned animal, torture and maiming of animals, use of animals in fights, and arrest without warrants. In addition, the section covers evidence, stallions, and impounding without food and water. The section about the killing of birds in the cemetery concerns also killing and detaining of homing pigeons. The last section about killing of gulls and cranes also concerns the destruction of eggs and nests. In addition, the section covers killing of elk and prosecution for these offenses.|
|CT - Horse - § 22-415. Inhumane transportation of equines. Penalty. Regulations||C.G.S.A. § 22-415||This Connecticut law makes it unlawful to carry any equine in an unnecessarily cruel or inhumane manner, or in a way and manner which might endanger the equine or knowingly and wilfully authorizes or permits such equine to be subjected to unnecessary torture, suffering or cruelty of any kind. Violation results in a fine of not less than one hundred dollars or more than five hundred dollars. [Also see the administrative regulations at https://www.animallaw.info/administrative/connecticut-equines-transportation-equines].|
|CO - Humane Slaughter - Article 33. Custom Processing of Meat Animals.||C. R. S. A. § 35-33-101 to 407||
This Colorado section includes both the meat processing laws and the humane slaughter provisions. It covers livestock, which are defined as cattle, calves, sheep, swine, horses, mules, goats, and any other animal which may be used in and for the preparation of meat or meat products. No processor shall shackle, hoist, or otherwise bring livestock into position for slaughter or shall slaughter livestock except by humane methods as defined by regulation; the use of a manually operated hammer, sledge, or poleax is not permitted. Additionally, poultry shall be slaughtered in accordance with "good commercial practices" and in a manner that will result in thorough bleeding. Any person who violates any provision is subject to a civil penalty of not more than $750 per violation for each day of violation and commits a class 2 misdemeanor.
|CO - Equine Activity Liability Statute - Article 21. Damages.||C. R. S. A. § 13-21-119||
This Colorado statute embodies the intent of the general assembly to encourage equine activities and llama activities by limiting the civil liability of those involved in such activities. This section also contains specific provisions related to llama activities. Liability is not limited by this statute where the equine or llama sponsor provided faulty equipment or tack, failed to make reasonable and prudent efforts to determine the ability of the participant to engage safely in the activity, owned or otherwise possessed the land upon which an injury occurred where there was a known 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.
|CT - Equine Activity Liability Statute - Chapter 925. Statutory Rights of Action and Defenses||C. G. S. A. § 52-557p||
This short Connecticut statute limits the liability of equine sponsors by providing that each person engaged in recreational equestrian activities assumes the risk for any injury arising out of the hazards inherent in equestrian sports. However, if the the injury was proximately caused by the negligence of the person providing the horse or by the failure to guard or warn against a dangerous condition, use, structure or activity, liability if not limited by law. Another section (557s), enacted in 2014, states that, in any civil action brought against the owner or keeper of any horse, pony, donkey or mule to recover damages for any personal injury allegedly caused by such horse, pony, donkey or mule, such horse, pony, donkey or mule shall not be found to belong to a species that possesses a naturally mischievous or vicious propensity. As such, there is no cause of action for strict liability brought against the owner of any horse, pony, donkey or mule to recover damages for any personal injury alleged to be caused by the animal.
|CT - Horse Meat - § 21a-22. Sale of equine meat in public eating places||C. G. S. A. § 21a-22||
This Connecticut law states that a public eating place shall not sell or offer equine meat without without indicating such contents of each item in print. Any person, or the responsible agent of any firm or corporation, who violates any provision of this section shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than 1 year or both.
|CT - Racing - Chapter 226. Gaming Policy, Regulation and Revenue||C. G. S. A. § 12-557-12-586||A person or business organization must have a license in order to conduct a races. The Commissioner of Consumer Protection is the one who grants the licenses. Each town must hold an election approving racing and pari-mutuel wagering in order for a license to be issued. The Commissioner may order random urine testing of race dogs. The Commissioner is also allowed to conduct investigations and hearings in order to carry out the provisions of this statute and is responsible for adopting regulations.|
|AK - Equine - Equine Activity Liability Statute||AS § 09.65.145; AS § 09.65.290||
Two Alaska statutes are provided here that relate to the limitation of liability for equine activities. The first is the equine activity liability statute, which states that livestock are unpredictable and inherently dangerous and all persons who knowingly place themselves in proximity to livestock for any reason involving an activity that includes livestock are considered a participant in livestock activity and assume the risk. Exclusions include gross negligence of the equine sponsor, knowledge of faulty tack or equipment, and failure to properly ascertain the level of competence by the participant. The second statute reiterates that a person who participates in a sports or recreational activity assumes the inherent risks in that sports or recreational activity, including horseback riding.
|AK - Bite - § 03.55.030. Dogs that annoy or bite animals or birds||AS § 03.55.030||
This Alaska statute provides that any dog that habitually annoys any wild deer, reindeer, sheep, cattle, horse, or other animal or bird either domestic or wild, or evinces a disposition which makes it likely that it will without provocation bite an animal or fowl, may be lawfully killed by any person when it is found at large. The owner or keeper of the dog, if known or reasonably identifiable, shall be notified and given reasonable opportunity to restrain the dog before it is lawful to kill it.
|AL - Entertainment - § 40-12-111. Horse show, rodeo, or dog and pony shows.||Ala.Code 1975 § 40-12-111||This Alabama laws states that every horse show, rodeo, dog and pony show, or like exhibition or show, where any charge is made therefor, shall pay a license tax of $25 for each day of performance.|
|AL - Racing - § 11-65-1 to § 11-65-47. Horse Racing and Greyhound Racing in Class 1 Municipalities||Ala.Code 1975 § 11-65-1 to § 11-65-47||This statute allows for municipalities in Alabama to vote on whether or not they wish to authorize horse and greyhound racing and pari-mutuel wagering. Each municipality that authorizes it must create a commission which must be incorporated in order for a municipality to conduct horse and greyhound racing. The commissions each regulate horse and greyhound racing only in their respective municipalities. A license must be obtained by the commission of the respective municipality in which one desires to operate or construct a racing facility.|
|AL - Equine - Immunity of those involved in equine activities.||Ala. Code 1975 § 6-5-337||
This Alabama statute embodies the legislature's recognition that persons who participate in equine activities may incur injuries as a result of the risks involved in those activities. This statute provides that for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, and safety, and to encourage equine activities, civil liability of those involved in equine activities is limited by law. Liability is not limited when the equine sponsor intentionally injures a participant or engages in willful or wanton behavior that causes injury or death.
|AZ - Horse slaughter - Article 4. Horsemeat.||A.R.S. § 3-2121 - 2132||
This Arizona article deals with horsemeat. A license shall be obtained from the division before slaughtering a horse for human consumption. There shall be an antemortem and a postmortem inspection of each horse slaughtered. All horsemeat food products shall be conspicuously branded, marked, tagged or labeled, “horsemeat” or “horsemeat product.” It is unlawful to offer horsemeat for sale for human consumption unless there is prominently displayed in conjunction therewith a sign bearing the words, in letters not less than eight inches in height and three inches in width, “horsemeat for human consumption.”
|AR - Damages, stock - § 23-12-909. Killed or injured animals--Rights of owner||A.C.A. § 23-12-909||This law states that any person who has a special ownership in any horses, mules, cattle, or other stock killed or wounded by any railroad trains running in this state may sue the company running the trains for the damages within 12 months of the injury.|
|AR - Equine - Equine Activity Liability||A.C.A. § 16-120-201 - 202||This Arkansas statute provides that an equine activity sponsor, an employee of an equine activity sponsor, a livestock sponsor, an employee of a livestock sponsor, a livestock owner, a livestock facility, or a livestock auction market are not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant resulting from the inherent risks of an equine activities activity or a livestock activity. Liability is not limited when the equine activity sponsor or an employee of an equine activity sponsor, a livestock sponsor, an employee of a livestock sponsor, a livestock owner, a livestock facility, or a livestock auction market knows or should know the equipment or tack is faulty, fails to make reasonable and prudent efforts to determine the ability of the participant, was aware of dangerous latent condition on the land, commits an act or omission that constitutes willful or wanton disregard for the safety of the participant, or when the participant is intentionally injured. Warning signs alerting participants to the assumption of risk in equine activities are also required by law.|
|AZ - Humane Slaughter - Slaughter of Animals||A. R. S. § 3-2001 to 2017||
This Arizona statutory section covers the slaughter of animals. Among its provisions include license requirements for the slaughter meat, recordkeeping requirements, and a section relating to humane slaughter. The humane slaughter law requires that a livestock animal is rendered insensible to pain prior to being hoisted or shackled; however, none of the provisions apply to one who slaughters an animal for his or her own uses. Interestingly, while the other provisions relating to adulterated meat and licensing requirements describe the penalty for violation, no penalty is listed under the humane slaughter statute.
|AZ - Equine Transport - Transporting equine in a cruel manner; violation;||A. R. S. § 3-1312; § 28-912||
These Arizona laws provide the requirements for transporting equines to slaughter. A vehicle used to transport equine for slaughter may have no more than one level or tier in the compartment containing the equine. Violation of the laws constitutes a misdemeanor.
|AZ - Equine Activity Liability Statute||A. R. S. § 12-553||
This Arizona statute provides that an equine agent or owner is not liable for injury if the participant took control of the equine prior to injury, if a parent or guardian signed a release on behalf of a minor, if the owner or agent has properly installed suitable tack or the participant has personally tacked the equine, or the owner or agent assigns a suitable equine based on a reasonable interpretation of the person's representation of his or her skills, health and experience with and knowledge of equines. Liability is not limited, however, when an equine owner or agent is grossly negligent or commits willful, wanton or intentional acts or omissions.
|OK - Equine Activity Liability - Title 76. Torts. Livestock Activities Liability Limitation Act.||76 Okl. St. Ann. § 50.1 - 50.4||The Oklahoma Livestock Activities Liability Limitation Act provides that it is the intent of the Oklahoma Legislature to encourage livestock activities by limiting the civil liability of livestock activities sponsors, participants and livestock professionals involved in such activities. A livestock activity sponsor, a participant or a livestock professional acting in good faith and pursuant to the standards of the livestock industry shall not be liable for injuries to any person engaged in livestock activities when such injuries result from the inherent risks of livestock activities. Oklahoma also has a unique provision that explicitly states that two or more persons may agree, in writing, to extend the waiver of liability pursuant to the provisions of the Oklahoma Livestock Activities Liability Limitation Act.|
|IL - Equine Liability Act - Equine Activity Liability Act||745 I.L.C.S. 47/1 - 47/999||This act stipulates that an equine sponsor or professional, or any other person, is immune from liability for the death or injury of a participant, which resulted from the inherent risks of equine activities. However, there are exceptions to this rule; a person will be held liable for injuries of an equine activity participant if he or she displays a willful and wanton or intentional disregard for the safety of the participant and if he or she fails to make reasonable and prudent efforts in ensuring the safety of the participant. In addition, a person will also be held liable for the injury of an equine activity participant if he or she is injured on the land or at a facility due to a dangerous latent condition of which was known to the equine sponsor, professional or other person.|
|IL - Cruelty - Horse Mutilation Act||720 ILCS 5/48-5||
This act text prevents the docking of horses' tails. Violation results in a Class A misdemeanor.
|US - Food Animal - Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter||7 USC 1901 - 1907||
These statutory sections comprise what is commonly termed the Humane Slaughter Act. Included in these sections are Congress' statement that livestock must be slaughtered in a humane manner to prevent needless suffering, research methods on humane methods of slaughter, the nonapplicability of these statutes to religious or ritual slaughter, and the investigation into the care of nonambulatory livestock.
|ME - Equine Liability - Chapter 743. Equine Activities||7 M. R. S. A. § 4101 - 4104-A||This act stipulates that an equine sponsor, equine professional, or any other person engaged in an equine activity, is immune from liability for the death or injury of a participant, as well as property damage, which resulted from the inherent risks of equine activities. However, there are exceptions to this rule: a person will be held liable for injuries of an equine activity participant if he or she displays a willful and wanton or intentional disregard for the safety of the participant and if he or she fails to make reasonable and prudent efforts in ensuring the safety of the participant. In addition, a person will also be held liable for the injury of an equine activity participant if he or she is injured on the land or at a facility due to a dangerous latent condition of which was known to the equine sponsor, professional or other person.|
|VT - Humane Slaughter - Humane Slaughter of Livestock||6 V.S.A. § 3131 - 3134||These statutes comprise Vermont's humane slaughter provisions. The law requires the humane slaughter of all commercial livestock with a "humane method" defined as a method whereby the animal is rendered insensible to pain by mechanical, electrical, chemical or other means that is rapid and effective before being shackled, hoisted, thrown, cast or cut (with exemptions for religious ritual slaughter). A person who violates this chapter shall be fined not more than $100.00 nor less than $50.00 or imprisoned not more than ninety days, or both, and in addition, the secretary may seek an injunction against a slaughterer.|
|US - Food Animal - Twenty Eight Hour Law||49 USC 80502||
This Federal law addresses the transportation of animals, including those raised for food or in food production, across state lines. The statute provides that animals cannot be transported by "rail carrier, express carrier or common carrier" (except by air or water) for more than 28 consecutive hours without being unloaded for five hours for rest, water and food.
|PA - Equine - Chapter 13. Equine Activity.||4 P.S. § 601 - 606||These statutes comprise Pennsylvania's Equine Activity Act, which sent into effect on February 21, 2006. Under the law, liability for negligence shall only be barred where knowing voluntary assumption of risk is proven in a particular case. However, the Act provides immunity only where a sign that states, "You assume the risk of equine activities pursuant to Pennsylvania law," is conspicuously posted on the premises in two or more locations.|
|PA - Humane Slaughter - Slaughter and Processing of Domestic Animals||3 Pa.C.S.A. § 2361 - 2362||These laws comprise Pennsylvania's humane slaughter provisions. The section begins with the enabling statute that grants authority to the relevant state agency. It then declares that humane methods shall be used in the handling of domestic animals for slaughter and in the actual bleeding and slaughter of domestic animals except in the cases of slaughter for ritual purposes or individual (e.g., non-commercial) consumption. The law itself does not proscribe penalties for non-compliance (but such may be listed in departmental regulations).|
|IL - Horse Meat Act - Chapter 225. Professions and Occupations.||225 ILCS 635/1 - 18||This Act prohibits the slaughter of horses for human consumption as well as importing, exporting, selling, giving, or even possessing horse meat if a person knows or should know that it will be used for human consumption. Violation of this section of the Act is a Class C misdemeanor. The Act does contain several exceptions. Notably, it does not apply to any commonly accepted noncommercial, recreational, or sporting activities.|
|ME - Horsemeat - § 2163. Sale of horsemeat||22 M.R.S.A. § 2163||This Maine statute provides that no person shall transport, receive for transportation, sell or offer for sale or distribution any equine meat or food products thereof unless said equine meat is plainly and conspicuously labeled, marked, branded and tagged "horsemeat" or "horsemeat products" unless such equine meat is conspicuously branded and labeled and a notice containing the words "horsemeat" and "horsemeat products sold here" is conspicuously displayed in said place of business. Any person, firm or corporation who shall violate any of the provisions of this section shall be punished by a fine of not more than $100 for the first offense and by a fine of not more than $200 for each subsequent offense, and the District and Superior Courts shall have concurrent jurisdiction of the offense.|
|VT - Impound - Sub Chapter 2. Pounds and Impounds.||20 V.S.A. § 3381 - 3485||The following Vermont statutes require that each organized Vermont town maintain a pound or else the town will be fined $30.00. The statutes also provide provisions for impounding an animal, retrieving an impounded animal, failing to retrieve an impounded animal, and assessing damages of an impounded animal, amongst other topics.|
|OK - Horse - § 6-192. Horse meat||2 Okl. St. Ann. § 6-192, § 6-207||
It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, offer or exhibit for sale, or have in his or her possession with intent to sell, any quantity of horsemeat for human consumption in Oklahoma.
|US - Horse - Wild Horses and Burros Act||16 USC 1331 - 1340||
The Wild Horses and Burros Act approved December 15, 1971, provides for protection of wild, free-roaming horses and burros. It directs the Bureau of Land Management of the Department of the Interior and Forest Service of the Department of Agriculture to manage such animals on public lands under their jurisdiction.
|US - Horse - Chapter 44. Protection of Horses.||15 U.S.C.A. § 1821 - 1831||
The Federal Horse Protection Act of December 2, 1970, states that causing horses to be "sore" or to suffer physical pain and distress for the purpose of improving the horse's performance is cruel and inhumane. This set of statutes describes both lawful and unlawful conduct against horses as well as the civil and criminal penalties that are in place for violating this Act.
|VT - Equine - § 1039. Equine activities; acceptance of inherent risks||12 V.S.A. § 1039||This statute represents Vermont's equine activity liability law. Under the Act, no person shall be liable for an injury to, or the death of, a participant resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities, insofar as those risks are necessary to the equine activity and obvious to the person injured. An equine activity sponsor may (it does not say "shall") post and maintain signs which contain the warning notice specified in this subsection.|
|DE - Equine Activity Liability - § 8140. CHAPTER 81. PERSONAL ACTIONS.||10 Del.C. § 8140||
This Delaware statute 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. Liability is not limited, however, when the equine professional knowingly used faulty tack, failed to make reasonable and prudent efforts to determine the ability of the participant to engage in the activity, owns or otherwise is in lawful possession of the land upon which the participant sustained injuries because of a dangerous latent condition which was known, commits an act or omission that constitutes willful or wanton disregard for the safety of the participant, or intentionally injures the participant. Equine professionals and sponsors are also required to post warning signs alerting the participants to the limitation of liability by law.
|OR - Animal Racing - Chapter 462. Racing.||O.R.S. § 462.010 - 990||Oregon created a Racing Commission that has the authority license, regulate, and supervise all race meets within the state and shall cause the race tracks that hold races to be inspected at least once each fiscal year. A race meet is not to be held unless a license is obtained from the Oregon Racing Commission. All employees of the race track as well as any public training facility or kennel for greyhounds involved in racing are also required to obtain a license from the Commission prior to engaging in their duties. The Commission may require each applicant to obtain a recommendation in writing of the board of county commissioners of the county in the event a race meet is to be held outside of a city and of the governing body of such city if the race meet is to be held within a city. The Commission is tasked with determining the number and classes of race meets to be held in any fiscal year and the total number of racing dates to be granted to a licensee, not to exceed 350 days in any metropolitan area in any fiscal year. The Commission is entitled to require chemical testing of the urine, blood, saliva, or other bodily substances of animals participating in races. Animals are prohibited from participating in races if they have been administered a drug that is prohibited by the Commission, prohibited drugs have been detected in the animal's system, and the animal has been stimulated or depressed in any way by a mechanical device not sanctioned by the Commission.|