Thursday, February 04, 2010

Oregon Cleans Up Its Act

A number of new animal laws took effect on January 1, 2010 in Oregon. Oregon's state legislature changed, added, and enhanced existing animal laws to become a top 5 rated state by the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

The first push of legislation came for puppy mills. Although not banned, Oregon has created restrictions on breeders to combat the problems of unsocialized and sick dogs. Among other restrictions, the statute requires that a breeder be limited to 50 breeding dogs over the age of 2. It also requires that the cages not be stacked and that the dog have enough room to stand, sit, turn, and lay down without hitting the walls of the cage or other dogs.

Oregon also banned private ownership of primates, large exotic cats, canines that aren't domestic dogs, bears and crocodilians. Anyone previously owning these animals must have the requisite permit from the Oregon Department of Agriculture.

Oregon's legislature also stepped up the punishment for animal fights. This legislation "makes it a felony to participate in events that feature 'combat between animals' in any way, shape or form. Previously, doing so was a misdemeanor."

Although Oregon's laws had already made it illegal to leave a domestic animal without minimal care, the newly enacted legislation will add equine to the list of animals that are not to be abandoned.

Two new laws will also make it tougher for an animal abuser to again become an animal owner. One law requires that a person adopting an abused animal sign a special form to prove that they are not living with the abuser or that they will return the animal to the abuser. The second law lengthens the amount of time that a convicted abuser must refrain from owning another animal.

For the full story, please read at OregonLive.

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