What is animal cruelty?

According to AGM Article 26 §350 it is defined as “Torture” or “Cruelty” includes every act, omission or neglect whereby unjustifiable physical pain, suffering or death is caused or permitted.

The Statutes

§353 – Overdriving, torturing and injuring animals; failure to provide proper sustenance.
§353-A – Aggravated cruelty to animals. (Buster’s Law)
§353-B – Appropriate shelter for dogs left outdoors.
§353-D. Confinement of companion animals in vehicles: extreme temperatures
§355 – Abandonment of animals.

You can see the law in it’s entirety here, our you can download the app onto your phone for instant reference.

How to Recognize Animal Cruelty

Originally from https://www.aspca.org/investigations-rescue/report-animal-cruelty.

While an aggressive, timid or fearful animal may appear to be a cruelty victim, it is not possible to know if an animal is being abused based on their behavior alone. It is best to examine the animal and his surrounding environment to determine whether or not he or she needs help.

Physical Signs of Cruelty or Abuse

  • Tight collar that has caused a neck wound or has become embedded in the pet’s neck
  • Open wounds, signs of multiple healed wounds or an ongoing injury or illness that isn’t being treated
  • Untreated skin conditions that have caused loss of hair, scaly skin, bumps or rashes
  • Extreme thinness or emaciation—bones may be visible
  • Fur infested with fleas, ticks or other parasites
  • Patches of bumpy, scaly skin rashes
  • Signs of inadequate grooming, such as extreme matting of fur, overgrown nails and dirty coat
  • Weakness, limping or the inability to stand or walk normally
  • Heavy discharge from eyes or nose
  • An owner striking or otherwise physically abusing an animal
  • Visible signs of confusion or extreme drowsiness

Environmental Signs of Cruelty or Abuse

  • Pets are tied up alone outside for long periods of time without adequate food or water, or with food or water that is unsanitary
  • Pets are kept outside in inclement weather without access to adequate shelter
  • Pets are kept in an area littered with feces, garbage, broken glass or other objects that could harm them
  • Animals are housed in kennels or cages (very often crowded in with other animals) that are too small to allow them to stand, turn around and make normal movements