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Searching 2023-2024 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.

NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.

Title 13 : Crimes and Criminal Procedure

Chapter 008 : Humane and Proper Treatment of Animals

Subchapter 001 : Cruelty to Animals

(Cite as: 13 V.S.A. § 352)
  • § 352. Cruelty to animals

    A person commits the crime of cruelty to animals if the person:

    (1) Intentionally kills or attempts to kill any animal belonging to another person without first obtaining legal authority or consent of the owner.

    (2) Overworks, overloads, tortures, torments, abandons, administers poison to, cruelly harms or mutilates an animal or exposes a poison with intent that it be taken by an animal.

    (3) Ties, tethers, or restrains an animal, either a pet or livestock, in a manner that is inhumane or is detrimental to its welfare. Livestock and poultry husbandry practices are exempted.

    (4) Deprives an animal that a person owns, possesses, or acts as an agent for of adequate food, water, shelter, rest, sanitation, or necessary medical attention or transports an animal in overcrowded vehicles.

    (5)(A) Owns, possesses, keeps, or trains an animal engaged in an exhibition of fighting; possesses, keeps, or trains any animal with intent that it be engaged in an exhibition of fighting; or permits any such act to be done on premises under his or her charge or control.

    (B) Owns, possesses, ships, transports, delivers, or keeps a device, equipment, or implement for the purpose of training or conditioning an animal for participation in animal fighting or enhancing an animal’s fighting capability.

    (6) Acts as judge or spectator at events of animal fighting or bets or wagers on the outcome of such fight.

    (7) As poundkeeper, officer, or agent of a humane society or as an owner or employee of an establishment for treatment, board, or care of an animal, knowingly receives, sells, transfers, or otherwise conveys an animal in his or her care for the purpose of research or vivisection.

    (8) Intentionally torments or harasses an animal owned or engaged by a police department or public agency of the State or its political subdivisions or interferes with the lawful performance of a police animal.

    (9) Knowingly sells, offers for sale, barters, or displays living baby chicks, ducklings, or other fowl that have been dyed, colored, or otherwise treated so as to impart to them an artificial color or fails to provide poultry with proper brooder facilities.

    (10) Uses a live animal as bait or lure in a race, game, or contest or in training animals in a manner inconsistent with 10 V.S.A. Part 4 or the rules adopted thereunder.

    (11)(A) Engages in sexual conduct with an animal.

    (B) Possesses, sells, transfers, purchases, or otherwise obtains an animal with the intent that it be used for sexual conduct.

    (C) Organizes, promotes, conducts, aids, abets, or participates in as an observer an act involving any sexual conduct with an animal.

    (D) Causes, aids, or abets another person to engage in sexual conduct with an animal.

    (E) Permits sexual conduct with an animal to be conducted on premises under his or her charge or control.

    (F) Advertises, offers, or accepts the offer of an animal with the intent that it be subject to sexual conduct in this State. (Added 1989, No. 270 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 1997, No. 130 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2003, No. 120 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2015, No. 53, § 1; 2017, No. 62, § 10; 2017, No. 112 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. May 1, 2018.)