JustOneMorePet

Every Pet Deserves A Good Home…

Animal Cruelty and Animal Cruelty Laws

I just moved to a new state… a cowboy state as they like to call themselves, and to a small town; diametrically the opposite of where I came from and grew up in, in just about every way.  It has been quite the experience in many ways… from the weather to breaking my ankle and an overall adjustment in perspective. 

There are many good things here, but there are also a few that will take more than just a little adjusting to.

I went out with some friends to a local bar (one of 3 in town) for the first time since breaking my ankle just a month after we arrived.  it was a slow night so you could actually sit and talk and hear what everyone was saying, although about 40-minutes into the conversation I wished I couldn’t hear as well.

We were at a table that soon grew into two of about 12 to 14 people.  One gal who came in late with a good friend of mine and her son, came in grumbling.  It was a gal that you just know has trouble follow her, or perhaps it is that she creates it?  We will call her Les(lie).

Les had been complaining about her dad, her ex, her horses and then out of the clear blue asked if anyone there would be willing to shoot her dog in the head.  My heart immediately fell into my stomach. She repeated the question directly to a couple of the guys, who actually said they would do it.  And what bothered me even more than her question, or their seeming willingness, was the fact that they did not even ask why? Before I could get out of my whirling thoughts, another gal, who also did not grow up here in cowboy town said. “Hey… I don’t like where this is going!!”  And I immediately chimed in “Me neither!!”

My local friend, who obviously recognized our disgust and uneasiness, quickly changed the subject and then afterward threw in that Les had a black German Shepherd that just loved her.  I took the opportunity to ask what exactly was wrong with the dog in question that she would need to shoot it.  Her response was that it was a pup that was hyper and she couldn’t deal with it.  So of course our logical question was, “Why not get it some training, give it to someone who wanted it, or take it to a rescue or the shelter? She said she tried to give it to her father who couldn’t take it and then rambled something ridiculous about not wanting to be responsible if someone else took the dog.  I guess killing it is better?

By this time I could hardly breath and the fact that only two of us, who weren’t from there, realized that this was wrong on so many levels, despicable and cruel angered as well as amazed me.

Because of the dynamic of the relationships at that table, I decided to keep my mouth shut for the moment since the conversation had moved on.

The other gal who spoke and I have found a rescue for the dog… but the underlying problems still exist:  the mental problems and cruelty of the gal who wanted to shoot her dog in the head because it was a high-strung pup/dog; the willingness of two people at the bar to shoot the dog; and the complacency and the acceptance of the rest of them with the idea and solution.  And then there is the question of whether I can remain here with attitudes like this… or whether I must remain here to stop the unnecessary killing of pets and inhumane treatment of animals in general?  M~

State Cruelty Laws Alabama-Montana

State Cruelty Laws Nebraska-Wyoming

Wyoming
http://legisweb.state.wy.us/statutes/titles/title06/chapter03.htm (Scroll ~1/4 down the page for the correct statute.)
Wyo. Stat. 6-3-203

Cruelty to animals is defined as: "knowingly and with intent to cause death, injury or undue suffering: overrides an animal or drives an animal when overloaded; or unnecessarily or cruelly beats, tortures, torments, injures, mutilates or attempts to kill an animal; or carries an animal in a manner that poses undue risk of injury or death; or unnecessarily fails to provide it with the proper food, drink or protection from the weather, or cruelly abandons the animal, or in the case of immediate, obvious, serious illness or injury, fails to provide the animal with appropriate care."  Cruelty to animals is a Misdemeanor with a fine up to $750 and/or imprisonment up to 6 months.

Aggravated animal cruelty is defined as: "Owns, possesses, keeps or trains fowls or dogs with the intent to allow the dog or fowl to engage in an exhibition of fighting with another dog or fowl" or attends, permits or promotes such an event. Aggravated cruelty to animals or a second or subsequent offense of cruelty to animals is a high misdemeanor with a fine up to $5000 and/or imprisonment up to 1 year.

Felony cruelty to animals is defined as: "knowingly and with intent to cause death, injury or undue suffering, cruelly beats, tortures, torments, injures or mutilates an animal resulting in the death or required euthanasia of the animal."  This is a Felony with a fine up to $5000 and/or imprisonment up to 2 years.

Additional sentencing provisions are: forfeiture of animals, cost of care, and prohibit or limit possession, ownership or custody of animals.  Exemptions are made for use of dogs in livestock management, use or training of dogs or raptors for hunting, humanely destroying an animal, industry accepted agricultural and livestock practices, rodeo, hunting or capture or predatory animals or other wildlife not otherwise prohibited.

Wisconsin
http://folio.legis.state.wi.us/cgi-bin/om_isapi.dll?clientID=96087&hitsperheading=on&infobase=stats.nfo&jump=951.02&softpage=
Wis Stat. 951.02 et. seq.

Cruelty to animals is defined as: "No person may treat any animal, whether belonging to the person or another, in a cruel manner."  Intentional or negligent violation is a Class A Misdemeanor punishable with a fine up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment up to 6 months.  Intentional violation that results in the mutilation, disfigurement or death of an animal is a Class E Felony punishable with a fine up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment up to 2 years.  Additional sentencing provisions include forfeiture of animals, cost of care, and forbidding the convicted from owning, possessing or training any animal of the type or species of the abused for not more than 5 years.  Exceptions are made for laws regarding wild animals, scientific research and veterinary care.
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West Virginia
http://www.legis.state.wv.us/WVCODE/61/masterfrm2Frm.htm (Scroll down list on the left to 61-8- 19.)
W. VA Code 61-8-19

Cruelty to animals is defined as: "cruelly mistreats, abandons or withholds proper sustenance, including food, water, shelter or medical treatment necessary to sustain normal health and fitness or to end suffering or abandons any animal to die, or uses, trains or possesses any domesticated animal for the purpose of seizing, detaining or maltreating any other domesticated animal."  This is a Misdemeanor with a fine of $300 to $1000 and/or imprisonment up to 6 months.  A second conviction is a Misdemeanor with a fine of $500 to $1000 and/or imprisonment of 90 days to 1 year.  Imprisonment is mandatory.  With a second or subsequent conviction, the convicted cannot be granted probation until they have undergone a complete psychiatric or psychological evaluation that is reviewed by the court.

There is a Felony provision for "intentionally tortures or maliciously kills an animal, or causes, procures or authorizes any other person to torture or maliciously kill an animal… For the purposes of this subsection, "torture" means an action taken for the primary purpose of inflicting pain."  This Felony conviction carries a fine of $1000 to $5000 and imprisonment of 1 to 3 years.   Additional sentencing provisions include forfeiture of the animals, cost of care, prohibition of possession or ownership of animals for 5 years if convicted of a Misdemeanor, 15 years if convicted of a Felony.  Exemptions are made for veterinary care, hunting, fishing, trapping, animal training, farming, game farms, and scientific research.
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Vermont
http://www.leg.state.vt.us/statutes/sections.cfm?Title=13&Chapter=008
Vt. St. Ann. Title 13, Chapter 8, 351 et seq.

Cruelty to animals is defined as: "intentionally kills or attempts to kill any animal belonging to another person without first obtaining legal authority or consent of the owner; overworks, overloads, tortures, torments, abandons, administers poison to, cruelly beats or mutilates an animal, exposes a poison with intent that it be taken by an animal; ties, tethers, or restrains an animal, either a pet or livestock, in a manner that is inhumane or is detrimental to its welfare; deprives an animal of adequate food, water, shelter, rest or sanitation, or necessary medical attention, or transports an animal in overcrowded vehicles; owns, possesses, keeps or trains an animal engaged in an exhibition of fighting; acts as judge or spectator at events of animal fighting or bets or wagers on the outcome of such fight; as poundkeeper, officer, agent of a humane society or as an owner or employee of an establishment for treatment, board or care of an animal, knowingly receives, sells, transfers or otherwise conveys an animal in his or her care for the purpose of research or vivisection; intentionally torments or harasses an animal owned or engaged by a police department or public agency of the state or its political subdivisions, or interferes with the lawful performance of a police animal; knowingly sells, offers for sale, barters or displays living baby chicks, ducklings or other fowl which have been dyed, colored or otherwise treated so as to impart to them an artificial color, or fails to provide poultry with proper brooder facilities; uses a live animal as bait or lure in a race, game or contest."  The classification of the crimes are not defined in the statutes.  Cruelty to animals is punishable with a fine up to $2000 and/or imprisonment for up to 1 year.  A second or subsequent is punishable with a fine up to $5000 and/or imprisonment up to 2 years.  Animal fighting (either statute) is punishable with a fine of up to $5000 and/or imprisonment up to 5 years.

Aggravated cruelty to animals is defined as: "intentionally kills an animal by means causing the animal undue pain or suffering; or intentionally, maliciously, and without just cause tortures, mutilates, or cruelly beats an animal."  Aggravated cruelty to animals is punishable with a fine up to $5000 and/or imprisonment up to 3 years.  A second or subsequent conviction is punishable with a fine up to $7500 and/or imprisonment up to 5 years.  Other sentencing provisions include: forfeiture of animal possessed or owned, cost of care, forfeiture of future rights to own or possess animals for a period determined by the court, animal cruelty prevention or educational program, psychological counseling, periodic and unannounced inspections by a humane officer.  Exemptions are made for activities regulated by Fish & Wildlife, scientific research, animal husbandry, veterinary medicine or surgical procedures, protection of person or other domestic animals, rabid animals, pest control, euthanasia by organized humane society, pound or shelter.
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Utah
http://www.le.state.ut.us/~code/TITLE76/htm/76_0B011.htm
Utah Code Ann. 76-9-301

Cruelty to animals is defined as: "intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence: fails to provide necessary food, care, or shelter for an animal in his custody; abandons an animal in the person’s custody; transports or confines an animal in a cruel manner; injures an animal; causes any animal, not including a dog, to fight with another animal of like kind for amusement or gain; or causes any animal, including a dog, to fight with a different kind of animal or creature for amusement or gain."  If these acts are committed "intentionally or knowingly", it is a Class B Misdemeanor with a fine up to $1000 and/or imprisonment up to 6 months.  If these acts are committed "recklessly or with criminal negligence" it is a Class C Misdemeanor with a fine up to $750 and/or imprisonment up to 90 days.

Aggravated Cruelty is defined as: "tortures an animal; administers poison or poisonous substances to an animal without having a legal privilege to do so; kills or causes to be killed an animal without having a legal privilege to do so."  If these acts are committed "intentionally or knowingly" it is a Class A Misdemeanor with a fine up to $2500 and/or imprisonment up to 1 year.  If these acts are committed "recklessly" it is a Class B Misdemeanor with a fine up to $1000 and/or imprisonment up to 6 months.  If these acts are committed "with criminal negligence" it is a Class C Misdemeanor with a fine up to $750 and/or imprisonment up to 90 days.

Other penalties that may be used at the court’s discretion: psychiatric or psychological counseling; forfeit any rights to the animal; repay the reasonable costs incurred in caring for each animal; no longer possess or retain custody of any animal during the period of probation or parole or other period.

Exemptions are made for veterinary practice, bona fide scientific research, protection of livestock, fowl or domestic animals, humanely destroying a suffering animal which is beyond recovery, and animal training.
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Texas
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/statutes/pe.toc.htm  (Scroll  down to Chapter 9, Chapter 42, Section 42.009 and click the link)
Texas Penal Code, Title 9, Chapter 42, 42.09

Cruelty to animals is defined as: " (1) tortures an animal; (2) fails unreasonably to provide necessary food, care, or shelter for an animal in the person’s custody; (3) abandons unreasonably an animal in the person’s custody; (4) transports or confines an animal in a cruel manner; (5) kills, seriously injures, or administers poison to an animal, other than cattle, horses, sheep, swine, or goats, belonging to another without legal authority or the owner’s effective consent; (6) causes one animal to fight with another; (7) uses a live animal as a lure in dog race training or in dog coursing on a racetrack; (8) trips a horse; (9) injures an animal, other than cattle, horses, sheep, swine, or goats, belonging to another without legal authority or the owner’s effective consent; or (10) seriously overworks an animal."  Sections (2), (3), (4), (9), or (10) (provide necessary food, care, shelter; abandons; transports in a cruel manner; injures, or seriously overworks) are a Class A Misdemeanor with a fine up to $4000 and/or imprisonment up to 1 year. The third conviction of the above is a State Jail Felony, with a fine up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment from 180 days to 2 years.  Sections (1), (5), (6), (7), or (8) (tortures; kills, seriously injures or poisons; animal fighting; uses as a lure; trips a horse) is a State Jail Felony with a fine up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment from 180 days to 2 years.  A third conviction of the above is a Felony of the Third Degree with a fine up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment from 2 to 10 years.  Exemptions are made for bona fide scientific research, protection of property or persons, fishing, hunting or trapping, wildlife control, and animal husbandry.
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May 20, 2011 - Posted by | animal abuse, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, Animal Rights And Awareness, animals, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, NO KILL NATION, Outreach for Pets, Pets, Stop Animal Cruelty, Toughen Animal Abuse Laws and Sentences, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , ,

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