Animal Law

By Karey Burek

Here are a few laws that have come into effect in the past few years around the United States.  These situations were cited from the Best Friends animal conservation organization.

Massachusetts:  The Massachusetts House of Representatives rejected two bills that would have allowed casino-style gambling at greyhound tracks.  This was in an effort to boost attendance because it is becoming a failing industry.

West Virginia:  People living in West Virginia convicted of intentionally hurting or maliciously killing an animal can be jailed for up to three years, fined up to $5,000 and banned from owning animals for up to 15 years.

Nebraska:  The mistreatment of animals including dogs and cockfighting, is now felony on the first offense.  Also, all dogs and cats released from shelters must be spayed or neutered and pet shops and breeders must provide customers with spaying and neutering information.

Kentucky:  In this state, animal cruelty statutes have been strengthened by a felony provision for extreme acts of cruelty, such as torture and malicious killing.

Virginia:  Animals in this state’s shelters and pounds can no longer be sold or given away for research. Possessing, training or selling dogs for fighting purposes is now illegal.

North Carolina: They have banned the commercial trapping of freshwater turtles.  Trappers captured more than 23,000 turtles last year to sell as pets, food or as ingredients for folk medicines. This ban took effect on July 1.

The University of Illinois is the first major university to adopt standards regarding dissection alternatives in the classroom.  Alternatives such as models, videos, CD-ROMs and books must be provided to students taking required courses; students taking elective courses must be able to appeal to department heads for alternatives; and course catalogs must indicate which classes potentially involve dissection.

In news from around the world, Sweden has decided that great apes and nine species of gibbon apes will be exempt from use in animal experiments.

Way to Go!!

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