Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon has signed into law Senate Bill 25 which will revise procedures for impounding livestock animals as the result of charges, including by making owners of impounded animals liable for reasonable costs of care for the animal. The law also adds permanent forfeiture of an animal or livestock as a penalty for anyone convicted of felony cruelty to animals.
Wyoming Revises Animal Impound Procedures
North Carolina Considers Establishing Animal Abuser Registry, Ownership Ban for Repeat Abusers
North Carolina Senate Bill 613 would establish and regulate the operation of a state animal abuser registry. The bill would also prohibit “ownership, charge, or custody of all animals” for up to five years following a second conviction for animal cruelty.
North Carolina Legislation Would Fund Use of Animals in School Programs
North Carolina House Bill 482 would establish a grant program of $300,000 to support “innovative school-based support programs for students integrating the use of animals as an outlet for positive mental health and behavioral learning opportunities.”
New York Considers Creating Offense of Misrepresenting Companion Animal as Service Animal for Personal Benefit
New York Senate Bill 5919 would establish the offense of misrepresenting a companion animal as a service animal for personal benefit, defined as when an individual “expressly or impliedly represents that an animal in his or her possession is a service animal for the purpose of obtaining any rights or privileges afforded to a person with a disability requiring the assistance of a service animal.” Violation would be punishable by a $250 fine.
Louisiana Legislation Would Define “Proper Shelter”
Louisiana House Bill 223 would amend the state’s animal cruelty prohibition to define “proper shelter” as “an upright, weather resistant structure with three walls, an opening, a roof, and a floor; it shall be free of waste and standing water, and it shall be sufficient in size for an animal to stand in an upright position, turn around, and make normal posturing positions.” The definition excludes “animal carriers, plastic crates, and other enclosures designed to provide temporary housing.”
Indiana to Require Animal Disease Reporting Within 24 Hours
Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb has signed into law Senate Bill 53 which will require any veterinarian, biomedical researcher, public health official, zoo or wildlife personnel, or custodian of an animal who knows or has reason to suspect that an animal is suffering from a disease deemed reportable by the board of animal health to report the occurrence within 24 hours of discovery (reduced from the previous 48-hour requirement).
Arizona to Require Landlords to Care for Companion Animals in Case of Tenant Death
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has signed into law House Bill 2507 which will require landlords to retrieve tenants’ companion animals in the case of tenant death or incapacitation and deliver the animals to the tenant’s relatives or an animal shelter if no relatives are available.
Georgia Legislation Would Regulate Commercial Dog Breeders
Georgia Senate Bill 303 would set standards for commercial dog breeders, including requirements for housing, bedding, outdoor access, veterinary care, grooming, breeding, euthanasia, disposal, and record-keeping. The bill would prohibit breeding female dogs more than once per year and require commercial breeders to sterilize all dogs by 5 years of age. Under the proposed regulations, “commercial breeder” would be defined as “any person or business entity possessing more than two dogs who breeds such dogs in order to sell or barter their progeny.”
Pennsylvania Considers Establishing Felony Crime for Torturing or Killing Police Animals During Perpetration of a Felony
Pennsylvania House Bill 940 would make it a third degree felony to “torture, mutilate, injure, disable, poison or kill a police animal while engaged as a principal or an accomplice in the perpetration of a felony.” The bill would also make it a first-degree misdemeanor to “recklessly torture, mutilate, injure, disable, poison or kill a police animal.”
New York Considers Requiring Veterinarians to Report Deaths of Animals Obtained from Dealers
New York Assembly Bill 6560 would require that veterinarians report to the state Department of Agriculture and Markets the cause of death (and allow them to disclose relevant records) for a companion animal if the death was due to illness, disease, or congenital condition and the death occurs within six months of obtaining the animal from a pet dealer. The bill also would authorize the commissioner to conduct an inspection of dealers’ facilities.