A National AgLaw Center Research Publication

States’ Animal Cruelty Statutes

Compiled by:
Kyle Weldon
Research Assistant 
Elizabeth Rumley
Senior Staff Attorney
National Agricultural Law Center
 
Each state in the United States has enacted statutes to punish individuals who engage in cruelty to animals. While there are many similar characteristics, the actual codified provisions vary drastically from state to state. Familiarity with these statutes is essential to anyone who interacts with animals–from recreational hunting to raising livestock, from owning a pet to living alongside wild animals. States’ Animal Cruelty Statutes provides the statutory text of each state’s animal cruelty statutes, along with the date of its possible expiration. The primary aim of this compilation is to provide the researcher with easy and free access to a state’s statutory language by simply clicking on the state’s image in the map below.

For a comparative study of the penalties enacted for animal cruelty offenses, see the companion publication, Animal Cruelty Statutes: A State-By-State Analysis.