Animal Control: Kentucky Pet Abuse Laws Could Be Better

Reported by: Amanda Stevenson
Set Text Size SmallSet Text Size MediumSet Text Size LargeSet Text Size X-Large
Updated: 12/18/2012 7:16 pm
Kentucky animal protection laws were ranked worst in the nation by the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

And animal control officers said they're not surprised.

"Our laws are somewhat lax laws compared to other states. What we might have classified as a misdemeanor in Kentucky, some states have as a felony now," said Jessamine County Public Services Director Mike Cassidy.

A misdemeanor for animal abuse in Kentucky includes abandonment, not providing proper food, water, or health care, and torturing a dog or cat (first offense).

Kentucky only has two felony charges for animal abuse: dog-fighting, and torture of a dog or cat resulting in serious physical injury or death.

A misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail and a $500 fine in Kentucky; a felony, up to five years in prison.

And veterinarians aren't allowed to report abuse by law.

"We're not allowed to share any information of the care of treatment of an animal with anyone other than the owner unless we specifically have their written consent," said Dr. Gary Clark, a veterinarian.

Animal control officers said they think the laws could stand to be looked at, especially to prevent something more serious from happening.

"Our biggest concern from our standpoint is what's this escalating to. Are they doing this violence toward animals and it's gonna become humans at a later time?" said Cassidy.
Most Popular
More than 30 teens escape from detention center
A spokesman says more than 30 teens escaped from a Nashville, Tenn. youth detention center and 17 are still being sought.
Coroner: Elderly Mercer Co. Couple Die in Apparent Murder-Suicide
The Mercer County Coroner has confirmed that an elderly couple were found dead in their home Sunday night following an apparent murder-suicide.
Former High School Football Coach Charged with Sodomy, Sexual Abuse
According to deputies in Pulaski County, a former high school football coach has been arrested on charges of sodomy and sexual abuse.
Police: Shots Fired Near Lexington School
Lexington Police said shots were fired Monday afternoon near Lafayette High School. Although school had been out for the Labor Day holiday, youth football tournament was being held at Lafayette. Video Video
Lexington PD: Argument Between Neighbors Results in Gunfire
An argument between neighbors escalated to at least one shot being fired Monday afternoon, according to Lexington Police. Video Video
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital. supports children's privacy rights. All persons under the age of 13 MUST have parental permission to use this website and direct parental supervision is strongly recommended.