Year-End Study Names 2011′s “Five Best States to be an Animal Abuser”

Posted on December 13, 2011

Animal Legal Defense Fund Releases Annual Report Ranking Animal Cruelty Laws Across the Nation; Illinois Remains on Top, Mississippi Shows Most Improvement

For immediate release

Contact:
Lisa Franzetta, Animal Legal Defense Fund
Stephan Otto, Animal Legal Defense Fund

San Francisco – Kentucky, North Dakota, Idaho, Iowa, and South Dakota are the five best states in the country to be an animal abuser, according to a new report released today by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF). Based on a detailed comparative analysis of more than 4,000 pages of statutes, tracking fourteen broad categories of provisions, the report recognizes the states where animal law has real teeth and calls out those like Kentucky – the single worst in the nation for animal protection laws for the fifth year running – where animal abusers get off easy. ALDF’s sixth annual state rankings report, the longest-running and most authoritative report of its kind, ranks all fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and other U.S. territories for the general comprehensiveness and relative strength of their respective animal protection laws.

Why are these five states in the dog house when it comes to getting tough on animal abuse? The legislative weaknesses seen in the states at the bottom of the animal protection barrel include severely restricted or absent felony penalties for the worst types of animal abuse, inadequate standards of basic care for an animal, and lack of restrictions on the ownership of animals for those convicted of cruelty to animals. On the other end of the spectrum, this year’s “best five states for animals” list remains unchanged from 2010, with Illinois, Maine, Michigan, Oregon, and California demonstrating through their laws the strongest commitment to combating animal cruelty. For the fifth consecutive year, Illinois was the very best of the best for the strength of its laws protecting animals. Mississippi showed the most improvement, moving from 50th last year (out of the 56 states, territories, and district) – and one of the five worst states – to 30th overall this year. Guam showed the second best improvement, moving up 18 spots to 34th in the nation. Arkansas, District of Columbia, Maryland, Oregon, and Texas all improved their standings due, in part, to the adoption of laws that allow animals to be included in domestic violence protective orders.

The full report, including a rankings map, chart, and overview of the strengths and weaknesses of the animal protection laws of the best and worst states, is available at aldf.org.

Since ALDF’s first rankings report in 2006, more than half of all states and territories have experienced a significant improvement in their animal protection laws. “We are very optimistic for additional progress in the upcoming year,” says Stephan Otto, Animal Legal Defense Fund’s director of legislative affairs and author of the report. “Regardless of where each jurisdiction currently ranks, every state and territory has ample room for improvement, and we urge lawmakers to heed the call for better animal protection laws across the nation. Animals do not vote, but those who love them definitely do.”

ALDF was founded in 1979 with the unique mission of protecting the lives and advancing the interests of animals through the legal system. For more information, and to download ALDF’s “Animal Protection Laws of the U.S.A. and Canada” compendium (on which the report is principally based), visit aldf.org.


5 thoughts on “Year-End Study Names 2011′s “Five Best States to be an Animal Abuser”

  1. John Walker says:

    On christmas day my two puppies were killed by a neighbor in lewisport Kentucky. he called my 4 month old german sheppard to his porch shot her then shot my 13 month old great pyreneze in the road some 100 feet away from his property line.

    he shot at them 11 times. across a highway etc, cops did nothing ecapt yell at us for using 911 on a dog. Both dogs have tags etc etc. they were pets.

    my dogs were 5 and 6 for this guy. The hancock county sheriffs office did nothing. Sept he killed two beagles per folks around here.

    Kentucky is hell for animals people. If you have pets do not move to Kentucky.

    we just got here and wish we could go back to florida.

  2. Nancy Fleischmann says:

    I’m so very sorry to hear about the loss of your dogs. I can’t understand why the police did nothing. People have made some very unkind remarks about Kentucky and now I’m convinced those remarks are true.

  3. Carole Ann Starks says:

    PLEASE WATCH THIS VIDEO and SHARE IT WITH ALL YOUR FRIENDS IF YOU AGREE THAT THERE IS A BETTER OPTION TO DOMESTIC PET TRESPASSING.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k1sw3QTK40I&feature=share

    THIS IS JUST ONE EXAMPLE OF SENSELESS DOMESTIC PET ANIMAL KILLINGS THAT TAKE PLACE IN THE STATE ALL THE TIME. KY LAW STATES THIS “SHOOTER” WAS WITHIN HIS RIGHTS OF THE LAW. THIS HAS TO CHANGE! READ BELOW NO. (2) AND JOIN IN WITH ME TO HELP KY LAWMAKERS MAKE BETTER OPTIONS A REALITY FOR DOMESTIC PET TRESPASSING AND HELP SAVE HELPLESS ANIMALS LIVES. THANK YOU!!
    VOICE YOUR OPINION AND MAKE IT COUNT:
    http://www.lrc.ky.gov/ Phone (502) 564-8100 Ext. 662
    BELOW PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINK THEN SIGN THIS FORMAL PETITION SO AN INVESTIGATION CAN BE PROMPTED. HERE IS THE LINK TO CARE2 FOR SIGNATURES THAT WILL BE SENT TO THE HANCOCK CO. SHERIFF’S DEPT.
    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/457/justice-for-dogs-murdered-on-christmas-day/

    Please help John Walker and so many others in the state of KY who have lost their pet dogs by murders who are hiding behind the terrible law that has so many grey areas. I want to see Kentucky become a “NO KILL” state for domestic pet dogs that are not vicious or rabid for just simply trespassing on a livestock owners property.

    Here is how KRS 258-235 (2) reads presently…
    (2) Any livestock owner or his agent, without liability, may kill any dog trespassing on that owner’s property and observed in the act of pursuing or wounding his livestock.

  4. Candi says:

    I live in a county that the actual “Humane Society” is in the court system for inhumane treatment. It was caught on video by an employee. Kentucky has to be one of the worse states. You can torture an animal and not even get a slap on the hand.

  5. Jerry Davis says:

    I am appalled at what goes on. If some slim ball sicko can get away with killing animals indesciminately. Then what is next? Other people or their children? I live here in the Pacific Northwest and I have two little dogs. If someone was to shoot my animals they better move to Mars. I guarantee I would track them down and make sure they never killed anything again. If they put me in jail for what I would do they better make sure I never got out lest there would be more hell to pay. The only way to stop this Satanic trash and the so called law enforcement garbage that does nothing to enforce the laws is to treat them to their own medicine.