Statutes

Statute by category Citationsort ascending Summary
US - Elephant - Asian Elephant Conservation Act 16 USC 4261 - 4266

A U.S. federal law that reaffirms the endangered status of Asian elephants and allocates money toward conservation efforts.

US - Elephant - African Elephant Conservation Act 16 USC 4201 - 4246

A U.S. federal law that reaffirms the endangered status of African elephants and allocates money toward conservation efforts.

US - Lacey Act - Chapter 53. Control of Illegally Taken Fish and Wildlife. 16 USC 3371 - 3378

The Lacey Act provides that it is unlawful for any person to import, export, transport, sell, receive, acquire, or purchase any fish or wildlife or plant taken, possessed, transported, or sold in violation of any law, treaty, or regulation of the United States or in violation of any Indian tribal law whether in interstate or foreign commerce.  All plants or animals taken in violation of the Act are subject to forfeiture as well as all vessels, vehicles, aircraft, and other equipment used in the process. For more, see the Topical Introduction to the Lacey Act.

US - Conservation - Fish & Wildlife Conservation Act 16 USC 2901 - 2912

The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act, approved September 29, 1980, authorizes financial and technical assistance to the States for the development, revision, and implementation of conservation plans and programs for nongame fish and wildlife. The original Act authorized $5 million for each of Fiscal Years 1982 through 1985, for grants for development and implementation of comprehensive State nongame fish and wildlife plans and for administration of the Act. It also required the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to study potential mechanisms for funding these activities and report to Congress by March 1984.

US - Fisheries - Packwood-Magnuson Amendment 16 USC 1801 - 1803

Aim of statute is the development of United States' controlled fishing conservation and management program designed to prevent overfishing and to rebuild depleted stock.

US - Endangered Species - Chapter 35. Endangered Species. 16 USC 1531 - 1544

This is key law at the national level for the listing and protecting of endangered species and their critical habitat. It also implements the US obligations under the treaty CITES. For more, see the Topical Introduction to the ESA.

US - Marine Mammal Protection Act - Table of Contents 16 USC 1361 - 1421h

The Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) is the main regulatory vehicle that protects marine mammal species and their habitats in an effort to main sustainable populations. In doing so, the statute outlines prohibitions, required permits, criminal and civil penalties, and international aspects in addressing marine mammals.  This document provides a table of contents for the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) with links to the specific statutory sections.

US - Marine Mammals- Marine Mammal Protection Act 16 USC 1361 - 1421h The Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) is the main regulatory vehicle that protects marine mammal species and their habitats in an effort to main sustainable populations. In doing so, the statute outlines prohibitions, required permits, criminal and civil penalties, and international aspects in addressing marine mammals. Included in the MMPA are provisions to protect dolphins from ocean vessels that harvest tuna with purse seine nets; provisions to protect polar bear; provisions that establish the Marine Mammal Commission and that agency's duties; and provisions for the Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program, including funding for standing response and unusual mortality events. The Act's 1972 Legislative History is also included.
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 - Seal - Chapter 24. Conservation and Protection of North Pacific Fur Seals. 16 USC 1151 - 1187

The Fur Seal Act of 1966 prohibited, except under specified conditions, the taking, including transportation, importing or possession, of fur seals and sea otters. Exceptions are authorized for Indians, Aleuts, and Eskimos who dwell on the coasts of the North Pacific Ocean, who are permitted to take fur seals and dispose of their skins. The statute also authorized the Secretary of Interior to conduct scientific research on the fur seal resources of the North Pacific Ocean.

US - Whales - Chapter 14A. Whale Conservation and Protection. 16 U.S.C.A. § 917 - 917d

These statutes extended federal authority and responsibility over the conservation and protection of all mammals including certain species of whales. The statutes also granted the Secretary of Commerce with authority to complete a comprehensive study of all whales in an effort to conserve and protect them effectively.

US - Whales - Whaling Convention Act 16 U.S.C.A. § 916 - 916l

These federal statutes describe the Whaling Convention Act which granted authority to the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Commerce for regulation. The Act makes it unlawful for any person in the United States to engage in whaling, transporting, or selling any whale or whale products, that are taken or processed in violation of the Act. The Act also prohibits other unlawful conduct such as whaling without a license and failing to keep required returns, records, and reports.  Finally, the Act provide penalties for violations including a fine of not more than $10,000, imprisonment of not more than one year, or both. In addition the court may prohibit such person from whaling for a period of time.

US - Sharks - Chapter 38. Fishery Conservation and Management 16 U.S.C.A. § 1857

The Shark Conservation Act of 2010 amended § 1857 of the Magnuson–Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. The amendment effectively closed a loophole that allowed vessels to transport illegally obtained shark fins so long as no sharks were finned aboard the vessel. The act makes it illegal to remove any of the fins of a shark (including the tail) at sea; to have custody, control, or possession of any such fin aboard a fishing vessel unless it is naturally attached to the corresponding carcass; to transfer any such fin from one vessel to another vessel at sea, or to receive any such fin in such transfer, without the fin naturally attached to the corresponding carcass; or to land any such fin that is not naturally attached to the corresponding carcass, or to land any shark carcass without such fins naturally attached. Essentially, all sharks must be brought aboard with their fins attached. There is a rebuttable presumption under the Act that if any shark fin (including the tail) is found aboard a vessel, other than a fishing vessel, without being naturally attached to the corresponding carcass, such fin was transferred in violation of the Act.

US - Wildlife - Chapter 23. National Wilderness Preservation System. 16 U.S.C.A. §§ 1131 - 1136 Under this Act, Congress established a National Wilderness Preservation System to be composed of federally owned areas designated by Congress as "wilderness areas", and these shall be administered for the use and enjoyment of the American people in such manner as will leave them unimpaired for future use and enjoyment as wilderness, and so as to provide for the protection of these areas, the preservation of their wilderness character, and for the gathering and dissemination of information regarding their use and enjoyment as wilderness; and no Federal lands shall be designated as "wilderness areas" except as provided for in this chapter or by a subsequent Act.
US - Conservation - Fish & Wildlife Improvement Act of 1978 16 U.S.C. 742l

The Fish and Wildlife Improvement Act of 1978 authorizes the Secretaries of the Interior and Commerce to establish, conduct, and assist with national training programs for State fish and wildlife law enforcement personnel. It also authorized funding for research and development of new or improved methods to support fish and wildlife law enforcement.  The law provides authority to the Secretaries to enter into law enforcement cooperative agreements with State or other Federal agencies, and authorizes the disposal of abandoned or forfeited items under the fish, wildlife, and plant jurisdictions of these Secretaries.

US - Eagle - Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act 16 U.S.C. 668a - d The BGEPA prohibits any form of possession or taking of both bald and golden eagles through criminal and civil sanctions as well as an enhanced penalty provision for subsequent offenses.  Further, the BGEPA provides for the forfeiture of anything used to acquire eagles in violation of the statute.  The statute excepts from its prohibitions on possession the use of eagles or eagle parts for exhibition, scientific, and Indian religious uses. For more, see the Topical Introduction to the BGEPA.
DE - Dangerous - Delaware Dangerous Dog Laws 16 Del.C. §§ 3071F to 3081F

These Delaware statutes comprise the state's dangerous dog laws.  Among the provisions includes the mandatory seizure of dogs who have chased or pursued persons on bicycles twice in a twelve-month period or those that have killed or inflicted serious injury on people or other domestic animals.  However, no dog shall be considered dangerous or potentially dangerous if a person was, at the time the injury was sustained, committing criminal trespass or other tort upon premises occupied by the owner of the dog, or was teasing, tormenting, abusing or assaulting the dog, or was committing or attempting to commit a crime.  An owner who violates the provisions regarding ownership of dangerous dogs faces graduated fines based on the conduct at issue.

DE - Research - Subchapter VI. Research Animal Retirement Act 16 Del.C. § 3090F - 3092F The purpose of this subchapter is to ensure that healthy cats and dogs that are no longer needed for research, education, testing, or other scientific purposes are made available for adoption instead of euthanized and to create a process for adoption through agreements with local shelters or rescue groups. When a research facility no longer needs a cat or dog that does not pose a health or safety risk to the public, the research facility shall either offer the animal to a rescue organization or shelter for adoption or offer it for adoption through private placement.
DE - Property - § 3050F. Dogs deemed personal property; theft; penalty 16 Del.C. § 3050F

Dogs are considered personal property in Delaware.

DE - Tether, dog - Chapter 9. Dogs. 16 Del.C. § 3044F

This Delaware statute addresses the requirements for indoor and outdoor facilities housing dogs. It includes storage, drainage, waste disposal, ventilation, lighting, shelter, height, and surface requirements. Food, water, and use of tethers are also addressed. The tether shall be of a type commonly used for the size dog involved, made of material not normally susceptible to being severed by the dog through chewing or otherwise, and shall be attached to the dog by means of a well-fitted collar that will not cause trauma or injury to the dog. The tether shall be a minimum of 10 feet in length and allow the dog convenient access to the dog house and to food and water containers.

DE - Dogs - Consolidated Dog Laws 16 Del.C. § 3041F - 3059F; 16 Del.C. § 3071F - 3081F; 3 Del.C. § 8201 - 8213; 16 Del.C. §§ 3010F - 3021F; 6 Del.C. § 4001 - 4011; 7 Del.C. § 570; 7 Del.C. § 1701 - 1740; 22 Del.C. § 116

These statutes comprise Delaware's dog laws.  Among the provisions include licensing requirements, laws concerning hunting field trials, and the dangerous dog subchapter.

DE - Spay, Neuter and Feral Cat - Subchapter II. Animal Population Control Program and Spay/Neuter Fund 16 Del.C. § 3010F - 3021F

This chapter represents Delaware's Animal Population Control Program. The section beings with findings from a 2002 study of how many dogs and cats were reclaimed, adopted out, or euthanized. It also has a definitional section that includes a definition for "feral cat." The chapter also describes its funding base and what parties are qualified to receive assistance under the Spay/Neuter Fund. Effective on June 29, 2006, it became mandatory for all cats and/or dogs of reproductive age to be spayed or neutered and inoculated for rabies prior to adoption from any private animal rescue groups and animal shelters.

VT - Domestic Violence - § 1103. Requests for relief. 15 V.S.A. § 1103 Any family or household member may seek relief from abuse by another family or household member on behalf of him- or herself or his or her children by filing a complaint under this chapter. Included among the relief that the court can grant is an order concerning the possession, care, and control of any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held as a pet by either party or a minor child residing in the household in section (c)(2)(G).
US - Fur - Subchapter IV. Labeling of Fur Products 15 USCA § 69 et seq.

The Fur Products Labeling Act, 15 U.S.C. § 69, declares that fur products will be considered “misbranded” if “falsely or deceptively labeled” or identified, and/or if the product does not contain a label that legibly shows the name(s) of the animals from which the fur was taken, the name or other identification of the person(s) who manufactured the fur, and the country of origin of the fur.  The label must also state, if true, that the fur product contains used or artificially colored fur, and/or if it is “composed in whole or in substantial part of paws, tails, bellies, or waste fur.”  However, the law defines “fur product” as an article of clothing that is made in whole or in part by fur, but states that the Commission can exempt articles because of the small quantity of fur they contain.  The Federal Trade Commission has deemed “relatively small quantity or value” to equal $150, which means “multiple animal pelts [can exist] on a garment without a label.”

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.

OK - Lost Property - Chapter 11. Bailments. Finders of Lost Goods. 15 Okl. St. Ann. § 511 - 518

These statutes comprise Oklahoma's lost property provisions.

VT - Trusts - § 408. Trust for care of animal 14A V.S.A. § 408

This Vermont law enacted in 2009 allows the creation of a trust to provide care of an animal alive during the settlor's lifetime. The trust terminates upon the death of the animal or, if the trust was created to provide for the care of more than one animal alive during the settlor's lifetime, upon the death of the last surviving animal.

Pennsylvania Statute Law 1920: Article 14: Criminal Law 14 Pa. Stat. §§ 7700-7783 (1920)

Pennsylvania laws concerning the criminal punishment for cruelty to animals from 1921.  The laws cover such topics as transportation of an animal to the powers of an agent from any Anti-Cruelty society. 

Pennsylvania Statute Laws 1920: Article 16: Agriculture Laws 14 Pa. Stat. §§ 394-402 (1920)

Pennsylvania laws concerning the treatment of animals in agriculture.  The laws cover such topics as maiming and disfiguring animals to the transportation of an animal.

VT - Assistance animal - Assistance Animal/Guide Dog Laws 13 V.S.A. § 355; 9 V.S.A. § 4502 - 4507; 23 V.S.A. § 1057

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

VT - Cruelty - Consolidated Cruelty Statutes 13 V.S.A. § 351 - 400; 20 V.S.A. § 2365b; 24 V.S.A. § 1943

This Vermont statutory section contains the amended anti-cruelty and animal fighting laws.  Animal cruelty, as defined by § 352, occurs when a person overworks, overloads, tortures, torments, abandons, administers poison to, cruelly beats or mutilates an animal, or deprives an animal which a person owns or possesses of adequate food, water, shelter, rest , sanitation, or necessary medical attention.  It is also animal cruelty  if one owns, possesses, keeps or trains an animal engaged in an exhibition of fighting.  The section excludes scientific research activities, hunting, farming, and veterinary activities among others.

Decreto 531, 1967 125338 This Decreto ratifies The Convention for the Protection of Flora, Fauna, and Natural Scenic Beauty of the Americas, signed in Washington on October 12, 1940.
VT - Cruelty - § 5784. Forcible entry of motor vehicle to remove unattended child or animal 12 V.S.A. § 5784 This Vermont law, enacted in 2016, provides that any person who forcibly enter a motor vehicle for the purpose of removing a child or animal from the motor vehicle shall not be subject to civil liability for damages arising from the forcible entry if certain steps are followed.
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.

OK - Dog, therapy - § 2611.12. Support person or therapeutic dog 12 Okl.St.Ann. § 2611.12

This Oklahoma statue was enacted by the state legislature to provide emotional support for a child witness, a child thirteen years of age or younger, in a criminal proceeding. The statute allows for a child witness to be accompanied by a support person while giving testimony. Additionally, the child witness is able to have a certified therapeutic dog accompanied by the handler in lieu of a support person. Under the statute, a certified therapeutic dog is a dog which has received requisite training and certification from the organizations listed in the statute.

ME - Endangered Species - Chapter 925. Fish and Wildlife Management and Research. 12 M.R.S.A. § 12808 This Maine law concerns the improper taking or interference with endangered and threatened species. Taking is defined as the intentional or negligent act or omission that results in the death of an endangered or threatened species, such as hunting, possession, selling, or deliberately feeding subject species. A warning must be issued for the first violation and the second violation constitutes a Class E crime.
ME - Endangered Species - Subchapter 3. Endangered Species; Management and Research. 12 M. R. S. A. § 12801 - 12810

These Maine statutes set forth the legislative intent to protect vulnerable species and list the relevant species.  By statute, a person is guilty of "misuse of an endangered or threatened species" if he or she imports into the State, hunts, takes or possesses, or deliberately baits, feeds, or harasses a listed species.  A warning is issued for the first infraction while the second infraction constitutes a Class E crime. 

ME - Fish and Wildlife Management Research - Chapter 925. Fish and Wildlife Management and Research 12 M. R. S. A. § 12701 to 12708

The following statutes give the Maine Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife the authority to make regulations for hunting, fishing, trapping or other public use of any wildlife management area or wildlife sanctuary. These statutes also provide civil and criminal penalties for violating the rules regulating state-owned wildlife management areas, state game farms, and scientific permits, while also detailing prohibited activity in wildlife sanctuaries.  Additionally, these statutes also reveal the wildlife management areas and wildlife sanctuaries that are under the commissioner’s authority.

ME - Exotic Pets - Subchapter 15. Wildlife Importation and Possession, Permits and Requirements, 12 M. R. S. A. § 12151 - 12161

These Maine statutes prohibit keeping wildlife in captivity, importing, breeding or releasing wildlife into the wild, with exceptions for a person holding a license. Taking reptiles, amphibians, and certain nonmarine invertebrates from the wild is also prohibited without a license. Provisions for the disposition of wolf hybrids are included. Penalties for violations incur fines that range from $100 to $500. Three or more such violations are considered to be a Class E criminal offense.

ME - Hunting, Internet - § 12101. License to operate commercial shooting area 12 M. R. S. A. § 12101 (note: 12 M.R.S.A. § 12103 Repealed by laws 2017, c. 205, § 12, eff. Nov. 1, 2017)

Subsection 1-C prohibits hunting via the Internet and the operation of Internet hunting services located within the state of Maine. A person who violates this section commits a Class E crime.

ME - Hunting - § 11215. Use of motorized vehicle to kill, injure, or molest wild animals or wild birds 12 M. R. S. A. § 11215 This Maine statute states that a person may not intentionally kill, injure or molest a wild animal or wild bird with a Motor vehicle, Motorboat, or Aircraft. A person who violates the statute commits a Class E crime.
ME - Hunting - Title 12. Conservation. 12 M. R. S. A. § 10654

This law reflects Maine's hunter harassment provision. The law splits the conduct into two possible offenses. First, a person may not intentionally or knowingly interfere with the lawful hunting, fishing or trapping of a wild animal, wild bird or fish. Second, a person may not intentionally or knowingly disturb or attempt to disturb a wild animal, wild bird or fish with the intent to interfere with the hunting, fishing or trapping of a wild animal, wild bird or fish. A person who violates either section commits a civil violation for which a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $500 may be adjudged.

DE - Trust for care of an animal - Chapter 35. Trusts 12 Del.C. § 3555

Delaware enacted its pet trust law in 2006. A trust for the care of one or more specific animals living at the settlor's death is valid. The trust terminates upon the death of all animals living at the settlor's death and covered by the terms of the trust.

CR - Fighting - Prohíbe Espectáculos e Importar Animales Pelea (Pit Bull, Peces Beta) 11571-G

(Text of Decree in Spanish). Prohibir en todo el territorio nacional la organización, promoción y realización de todo acto cuyo objetivo sea total o parcialmente la pelea entre animales, como por ejemplo perros APTB (American pit bul terrier), peces siameses (Beta) y cualquier otro tipo de animal normalmente reconocido como apto para pelear.

LEY 21.020 1106037 This law establishes the rights and responsibilities of those in possession of companion animals.
OK - Dog - Consolidated Dog Laws 11 Okl.St.Ann. § 22-115.1; 21 Okl.St.Ann. § 649.1 and 649.2; 21 Okl. St. Ann. § 1717 - 1718; 4 Okl.St.Ann. § 41 - 47; 391 - 402; 499 - 499.10; 501 - 602; 29 Okl. St. Ann. § 7-304; 70 Okl.St.Ann. § 5-117.6

These statutes comprise Oklahoma's dog laws.  Among the provisions include dog control laws, sterilization provisions for adopted animals, and the use of unclaimed animals in scientific research or experimentation.

OK - Licenses - § 22-115. Animals running at large--Regulation and taxation 11 Okl. St. Ann. § 22-115 to 115.1

This Oklahoma statute provides that the municipal governing body may regulate or prohibit animals from running at large.  The governing body may also regulate and provide for taxing the owners and harborers of dogs, and authorize the killing of dogs which are found at large in violation of any ordinance regulating the same.

DE - Fur - Chapter 5. Specific Offenses 11 Del.C. § 1325A

In Delaware, a person is guilty of the unlawful trade in dog or cat by-products in the 2nd degree if the person knowingly or recklessly sells, barters or offers for sale or barter, the fur or hair of a domestic dog or cat or any product made in whole or in part from the fur or hair of a domestic dog or cat. The unlawful trade in dog or cat by-products in the 2nd degree is a class B misdemeanor. A person is guilty of the unlawful trade in dog or cat by-products in the 1st degree if the person knowingly or recklessly sells, barters or offers for sale or barter, the flesh of a domestic dog or cat or any product made in whole or in part from the flesh of a domestic dog or cat. The unlawful trade in dog or cat by-products in the first degree is a class A misdemeanor.

DE - Cruelty - Consolidated Cruelty Statutes 11 Del.C. § 1325 - 1327;16 Del.C. § 3001F - 3008F; 11 Del.C. § 775

These Delaware sections comprise the state's anti-cruelty and animal fighting provisions.  Delaware's anti-cruelty section provides that cruelty to animals is when a person intentionally or recklessly subjects any animal (excluding fish, crustacea or molluska) to cruel mistreatment, cruel neglect, or kills or injures any animal belonging to another person.  Actively engaging in animal fighting activities is a class F felony while being a spectator at a fight is a class A misdemeanor.

Decreto 2, 2015 1080855 This Decreto lays out the regulations for the reproductive control of pets. Its purpose is to control the population of companion animals through the sterilization of these species.

Pages