Animal cruelty results in little real consequence in these states.
In Idaho animal cruelty is also a misdemeanor. Idaho Code §25-3502, §25-3504, §25-3505, §25-3510-3511, §25-3518. For a first conviction, a person can be fined no more than $5,000 and jailed for 6 months. § 25-3520A
For a second conviction within 10 years of the first one, a person still cannot be fined more than $7000 and jailed for more than 9 months. And, for any person convicted on a third or subsequent violation, within fifteen (15) years of the first, they can be sentenced to no more than 1 year in jail and a fine of $9000.
It should be noted the punishment for poisoning of animals "shall not exceed three (3) years, or in the county jail not exceeding one (1) year, and a fine not less than one hundred dollars ($ 100) or more than five thousand dollars ($ 5000)." §25-3503.
The animals involved may be seized with a bonding requirement and forfeiture hearing to follow upon probable cause to believe there has been a violation of the animal cruelty laws. The animals may eventually be awarded to a humane organization. § 25-3520A-B Note that for other property, under Idaho Code § 18-7001 a person who destroys the property of another, can be punished by imprisonment in the county jail for up to one (1) year or a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($ 1,000), or both. It does not matter if it was the first or second offense.
Moreover, if a person destroys the property of another that has a value in excess of $1000, he is subject to punishment of imprisonment in the state prison for not less than one (1) year nor more than five (5) years, and may be fined not more than one thousand dollars ($ 1,000), or by both such fine and imprisonment.
The Idaho law provides more protection from damage to a flat screen TV than a dog or cat. Visit this link to contact Idaho legislators and let them know it’s time to make animal cruelty a felony.
In Mississippi under Miss. Code §§97-41-1, 97-41-2, 97-41-5, 97-41-7, 97-41-9, 97-41-16 animal cruelty is a misdemeanor with fines up to $1000 and 6 months in jail. Miss. Code §99-19-31
In fact, until 2006 cats were not included in §97-41-16, the crime of malicious or mischievous injury to dogs. Now such injury to cats, as well as dogs, is illegal but, again, is only a misdemeanor. §97-41-16, Under Miss. Code §97-41-16, a judge can also order restitution for veterinary bills and the market value of the animal.
Poisoning of animals in Mississippi is punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary not exceeding three years, or in the county jail not exceeding one year, and by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars. Miss. Code §97-41-17
In Mississippi it is a felony with a possible penalty of $5000 or 5 years in prison or both to kill or injure a public service animal. §97-41-23.
In North Dakota animal cruelty is a Class A misdemeanor. N.D. Cent. Code, § 36-21.1-11. See N.D. Cent. Code, § 36-21.1-01 et seq. including N.D. Cent. Code, § 36-21.1-02, regarding acts of cruelty and N.D. Cent. Code, Â§ 36-21.1-03, cruelty in transportation. The maximum penalty is a fine of $2000 or one year imprisonment or both. N.D. Cent. Code §12.1-32-01
In South Dakota, too, it is no more than a misdemeanor to abuse, poison or kill an animal of another or inhumanely treat one’s own animal. S. Dakota Code §40-1-20 (poison animal of another) § 40-1-21 (kill or injure animal of another) §40-1-27 (inhumane treatment). The most punishment an abuser faces is a $2000 fine and one year in jail. §22-6-2. Abuse of a service animal in South Dakota merits no more than thirty days imprisonment in a county jail or five hundred dollars fine, or both. §22-6-2.
by Laura Allen for Animal Law Coalition