Your State
States vary in their oversight of animal control and transactions involving animals. Click on your state to find out whether or not your state prohibits, mandates, allows, or has not dealt with the issue of pound seizure.

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CONTACT AAVS IF YOU HAVE ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT POUND SEIZURE IN YOUR STATE.




ALABAMA

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

ALASKA

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

ARIZONA

State law allows release of cats and dogs:

TITLE 11. COUNTIES
CHAPTER 7. INTERGOVERNMENTAL OPERATIONS
ARTICLE 6. ANIMAL CONTROL
A.R.S. 11-1013 (2001)

11-1013. Establishment of county pounds; impounding and disposing of dogs and cats; reclaiming impounded dogs and cats; pound fees

C. Each stray dog or any cat impounded shall be kept and maintained at the county pound for a minimum of seventy-two hours unless claimed by its owner. Any person may purchase such a dog or cat upon expiration of the impoundment period, provided such person pays all pound fees established by the county board of supervisors and complies with the licensing and vaccinating provisions of this article. If such dog or cat is to be used for medical research, no license or vaccination shall be required.

ARKANSAS

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

CALIFORNIA

State law allows release of animals from shelter facilities:

CIVIL CODE
DIVISION 3. Obligations
PART 4. Obligations Arising from Particular Transactions
TITLE 3. Deposit
CHAPTER 2. Deposit for Keeping
ARTICLE 1. General Provisions
Cal Civ Code 1834.5 (2001)

1834.5. Abandonment of animal delivered to veterinarian

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, whenever any animal is delivered to any veterinarian, dog kennel, cat kennel, pet-grooming parlor, animal hospital, or any other animal care facility pursuant to any written or oral agreement entered into after the effective date of this section, and the owner of such animal does not pick up the animal within 14 calendar days after the day the animal was due to be picked up, the animal shall be deemed to be abandoned. The person into whose custody the animal was placed for care shall first try for a period of not less than 10 days to find a new owner for the animal, and, if unable to place the animal with a new owner, shall thereafter humanely destroy the animal so abandoned.

If an animal so abandoned was left with a veterinarian or with a facility which has a veterinarian, and a new owner cannot be found pursuant to this section, such veterinarian shall humanely destroy the animal.

There shall be a notice posted in a conspicuous place, or in conspicuous type in a written receipt given, to warn each person depositing an animal at such animal care facilities of the provisions of this section.

CIVIL CODE
DIVISION 3. Obligations
PART 4. Obligations Arising from Particular Transactions
TITLE 3. Deposit
CHAPTER 2. Deposit for Keeping
ARTICLE 1. General Provisions
Cal Civ Code 1834.6 (2001)

1834.6. Use of abandoned animal for experimentation

An abandoned animal, as described in Section 1834.5, shall not be used for scientific or any other type of experimentation, nor shall such an abandoned animal be turned over to a pound or animal regulation department of a public agency.

CIVIL CODE
DIVISION 3. Obligations
PART 4. Obligations Arising from Particular Transactions
TITLE 3. Deposit
CHAPTER 2. Deposit for Keeping
ARTICLE 1. General Provisions
Cal Civ Code 1834.7

1834.7. Notice requirements that animals turned into a shelter facility may be used for research purposes

(a) In any pound or animal regulation department of a public or private agency where animals are turned over dead or alive to a biological supply facility or a research facility, a sign (measuring a minimum of 28x21 cm-- 11x81/2 inches --with lettering of a minimum of 3.2 cm high and 1.2 cm wide-- 11/4x1/2 inch --(91 point)) stating:

"Animals Turned In To This Shelter May Be Used For Research Purposes or to Supply Blood, Tissue, or Other Biological Products"

shall be posted in a place where it will be clearly visible to a majority of persons when turning animals over to the shelter. This statement shall also be included on owner surrender forms. The owner surrender forms shall also include the definition of "biological supply facility" contained in subdivision (c).

(b) For purposes of this section, "animal research facility" includes any laboratory, firm, association, corporation, copartnership, and educational institution.

(c) For purposes of this section, "biological supply facility" includes any blood bank, laboratory, firm, association, corporation, copartnership, or educational institution that sells biological materials such as blood or animals, either alive or dead, to research facilities, educational institutions, or veterinarians.

Note: Although California state law allows the release of animals from shelter facilities, no California counties are currently practicing pound seizure.

COLORADO

State law allows release of cats and dogs:

 

TITLE 35. AGRICULTURE
LIVESTOCK
ARTICLE 42.5. ANIMAL SHELTERS AND POUNDS
C.R.S. 35-42.5-101 (2001)

35-42.5-101. Duties and restrictions relating to shelters and pounds - legislative declaration

(1) (a) (I) As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires, an animal "shelter or pound" means a nonprofit private or publicly owned facility where stray, abandoned, lost, or unwanted pet animals are held and which facility contains four or more pet animals at any given time. "Pound or shelter" does not mean a breeding facility maintained for the express and sole purpose of supplying pet animals to entities for research. Before selling, giving, lending, or in any other manner providing a dog or cat to any private or public facility for use in medical or any other kind of experimentation, a pound or shelter shall care for such dog or cat for a minimum of two weeks, during which time such dog or cat shall be made available for adoption while the pound or shelter makes a reasonable effort to establish the identity of the owner of such dog or cat and, if such owner is identified, gives such owner notice regarding the taking and impounding of such animal and an opportunity to reclaim such animal. Such reasonable effort shall include contacting the owner if the dog or cat is wearing an identification tag.

(II) Pounds and shelters shall not participate in the practice known as "red tagging", which, for the purposes of this section, means the isolation, without opportunity for adoption, of healthy, amiable dogs and cats for research animal buyers. No dog or cat shall be designated as a candidate for medical or any other kind of experimentation unless such dog or cat has been made available for adoption during the two-week period it is cared for by the pound or shelter.

(III) If a pound or shelter provides dogs or cats to facilities for experimentation, such pound or shelter shall inform an owner who is relinquishing his dog or cat to the pound or shelter of such practice. The pound or shelter may charge a reasonable fee for housing the dog or cat during the two-week period the animal is cared for by the pound or shelter.

(b) For purposes of this subsection (1), "experimentation" includes any research, or testing, or the use of an animal for the training of students or medical personnel.

CONNECTICUT
State law prohibits release of animals:

 

TITLE 22. AGRICULTURE. DOMESTIC ANIMALS
CHAPTER 435 DOGS AND OTHER COMPANION ANIMALS. KENNELS AND PET SHOPS
Conn. Gen. Stat. 22-332a (2001)

22-332a. Use of dogs for medical research restricted.

(a) No person shall procure or use any living dog for medical or biological teaching, research or study except a hospital, educational institution or laboratory licensed for such purpose in accordance with the provisions of section 22-332b. No such hospital, educational institution or laboratory shall purchase or accept, without fee, any living dog from any municipal animal control officer, pound, kennel or commercial kennel in this state.

(b) No animal control officer or municipal animal control officer shall sell, give or transfer any unclaimed, impounded dog to any animal dealer, whether or not such dealer is licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture.

DELAWARE

State law prohibits release of animals:

 

TITLE 3. AGRICULTURE
PART VI. DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN ANIMALS, BIRDS, REPTILES AND INSECTS
CHAPTER 80. HUMANE KILLING OF ANIMALS HELD IN SHELTER
3 Del. C. 8001 (2001)

8001. Adoption or euthanasia authorized

Any dog, cat or any other animal held by or in the custody of a private or public animal shelter or agency and not reclaimed by the owner within 5 days from written notification to the owner of the animal, if ownership can be determined, unless earlier disposal is recommended by a doctor of veterinary medicine, may be disposed of only by adoption as a companion in a suitable home if a domestic animal, or by rehabilitation to its natural habitat if a wild animal, or by euthanasia performed in 1 of the following ways: (1) By administration of sodium pentobarbital; or (2) With chloroform by a means approved in writing by a licensed veterinarian after inspecting the equipment and method.

FLORIDA

Local authorities have jurisdiction over animal control.

GEORGIA

Counties/municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

HAWAII

State law prohibits release of animals:

DIVISION 1. GOVERNMENT
TITLE 11. AGRICULTURE AND ANIMALS
CHAPTER 143. ANIMALS: LICENSES AND REGULATIONS
HRS 143-18 (2001)

143-18. Unlawful disposition of impounded dogs

It shall be unlawful for any officer to knowingly sell or give any impounded dog to any person, firm, corporation, association, medical college, or university for the purpose of animal experimentation.

IDAHO

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

ILLINOIS

State law prohibits release of animals:

Chapter 510. Animals
Animal Control Act

510 ILCS 5/11 (2005)

§ 510 ILCS 5/11. Dogs or cats not redeemed; humane dispatch or adoption; release without spaying or neutering prohibited

§ 11. When not redeemed by the owner, agent, or caretaker, a dog or cat must be scanned for a microchip. If a microchip is present, the registered owner must be notified. After contact has been made or attempted, dogs or cats deemed adoptable by the animal control facility shall be offered for adoption, or made available to a licensed humane society or rescue group. If no placement is available, it shall be humanely dispatched pursuant to the Humane Euthanasia in Animal Shelters Act. [FN1] An animal pound or animal shelter shall not release any dog or cat when not redeemed by the owner unless the animal has been rendered incapable of reproduction and microchipped, or the person wishing to adopt an animal prior to the surgical procedures having been performed shall have executed a written agreement promising to have such service performed, including microchipping, within a specified period of time not to exceed 30 days. Failure to fulfill the terms of the agreement shall result in seizure and impoundment of the animal and any offspring by the animal pound or shelter, and any monies which have been deposited shall be forfeited and submitted to the Pet Population Control Fund on a yearly basis. This Act shall not prevent humane societies from engaging in activities set forth by their charters; provided, they are not inconsistent with provisions of this Act and other existing laws. No animal shelter or animal control facility shall release dogs or cats to an individual representing a rescue group, unless the group has been licensed or has a foster care permit issued by the Illinois Department of Agriculture or is a representative of a not-for-profit out-of-state organization. The Department may suspend or revoke the license of any animal shelter or animal control facility that fails to comply with the requirements set forth in this Section or that fails to report its intake and euthanasia statistics each year.

INDIANA

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

IOWA

State law allows release of animals:

 

TITLE V AGRICULTURE
SUBTITLE 2 ANIMAL INDUSTRY
CHAPTER 162 CARE OF ANIMALS IN COMMERCIAL ESTABLISHMENTS
Iowa Code 162.2 & 162.20 (2008)

162.2 DEFINITIONS.

16. "Research facility" means any school or college of medicine, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, or osteopathy, or hospital, diagnostic or research laboratories, or other educational or scientific establishment situated in this state concerned with the investigation of, or instruction concerning the structure or function of living organisms, the cause, prevention, control or cure of diseases or abnormal conditions of human beings or animals.

162.20 STERILIZATION.

5. This section shall not apply to the following:

c. The transfer of a dog or cat to a research facility as defined in section 162.2 or a person licensed by the United States department of agriculture as a class B dealer pursuant to 9 C.F.R. subchapter A, part 2. However, a class B dealer who receives an unsterilized dog or cat from a pound or animal shelter shall either sterilize the dog or cat or transfer the unsterilized dog or cat to a research facility provided in this paragraph. The class B dealer shall not transfer a dog to a research facility if the dog is a greyhound registered with the national greyhound association and the dog raced at a track associated with pari-mutuel racing unless the class B dealer receives written approval of the transfer from a person who owned an interest in the dog while the dog was racing.

KANSAS

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

KENTUCKY

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

LOUISIANA

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

MAINE

State law prohibits release of animals:

 

TITLE 17. CRIMES
CHAPTER 42. ANIMAL WELFARE
SUBCHAPTER II. POSSESSION OF ANIMALS
17 M.R.S. 1025 (2001)

1025. Handling of animals seized or held

1. HANDLING OF ANIMALS. No humane agent, animal control officer, animal shelter, pound, animal care center, humane society or veterinarian and anyone acting under their authority and having possession of any animal by reason of his office may:

A. Provide or supply dealers, commercial kennels or laboratories with
the animal; or

B. Give, release, sell, trade, loan, transfer or otherwise provide
any live animal to any individual, firm, association, corporation,
educational institution, laboratory, medical facility or anyone else
for purposes of experimentation or vivisection.

MARYLAND

State law prohibits the release of dogs or cats:

 

CRIMINAL LAW
TITLE 10. CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC HEALTH, CONDUCT, AND SENSIBILITIES
SUBTITLE 6. CRIMES RELATING TO ANIMALS
MD Code, Criminal Law 10-617 (2002)

10-617. Disposal of domestic animal.

(b) In general.- An animal control unit shall dispose of an unclaimed dog or cat only by:

(1) placing the animal in a suitable home;
(2) retaining the animal in the animal control unit; or
(3) humanely destroying the animal.

MASSACHUSETTS

State law prohibits release of animals:
[In 1983, became first state to officially prohibit pound seizure]

 

PART I. ADMINISTRATION OF THE GOVERNMENT
TITLE XX. PUBLIC SAFETY AND GOOD ORDER
CHAPTER 140. LICENSES
DOGS
Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 140, 151 (2002)

151. Dog Officers; Killing Unlicensed Dogs; Officers Not to Be Licensed Animal Dealers.

... No dog officer shall be a licensed animal dealer registered with the United States Department of Agriculture, and no dog officer, either privately or in the course of carrying out his official assignments as an agent for his municipality, shall give, sell, or turn over any animal which may come into his custody to any business or institution licensed or registered as a research facility or animal dealer with the United States Department of Agriculture. No municipality shall give, sell, or turn over any animal which may come into its custody to any business or institution licensed or registered as a research facility or animal dealer with the United States Department of Agriculture. Whoever violates the provisions of this paragraph shall be punished by a fine of not less than fifty nor more than two hundred dollars.

PART I. ADMINISTRATION OF THE GOVERNMENT
TITLE XX. PUBLIC SAFETY AND GOOD ORDER
CHAPTER 140. LICENSES
DOGS
Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 140, 174D (2002)

174D. Research Institutions; Use of Dogs or Cats in Scientific Investigation, Experiment or Instruction; Use in Testing of Drugs or Medicines; License Requirement; Procedure and Fee; Revocation or Suspension of License; Rules and Regulations.

Section 9. Commencing October first, nineteen hundred and eighty-six, no person, institution, animal dealer or their authorized agents shall transport, or cause to be transported, any animal obtained from any municipal or public pound, public agency, or dog officer acting individually or in an official capacity into the commonwealth for purposes of research, experimentation, testing, instruction or demonstration. Until October first, nineteen hundred and eighty-six, any institution obtaining any such animals shall on or before December first of every year submit to the department of public health a written report detailing its plans for discontinuation of the use of such animals.

MICHIGAN

State law allows release of cats and dogs:

 

CHAPTER 287 ANIMAL INDUSTRY
USE OF DOGS AND CATS FOR RESEARCH
MCLS 287.389 (2002)

287.389. Sale by public auction; sale by weight; restrictions on purchase.

Sec. 9. Dogs and cats shall not be offered for sale or sold to a research facility at public auction or by weight; or purchased by a research facility at public auction or by weight. A research facility shall not purchase any dogs or cats except from a licensed dealer, public dog pound, humane society, or from a person who breeds or raises dogs or cats for sale. Any county, city, village or township operating a dog pound or animal shelter may sell for an amount not to exceed $10.00 per animal or otherwise dispose of unclaimed or unwanted dogs and cats to a Michigan research facility.

VICTORY! Pound Seizure Banned In Osceola County, Michigan!
On April 7, 2009, Osceola County unanimously passed a recommendation to end the release of animals from its pound to research.

End to Pound Seizure in Montcalm County!

MINNESOTA

State law prohibits release of animals:

Police Regulations
Chapter 346. STRAY ANIMALS; COMPANION ANIMALS
Minn. Stat. 346.47 (2012)

346.47 SEIZED ANIMALS.

Subd. 3. Release of animals. A person must not release an animal seized and held under this section for research or product testing, either directly or through an animal dealer. This subdivision does not apply to the temporary transfer of an animal to a college of veterinary medicine or veterinary technology school accredited by the American Veterinary Medicine Association for the purpose of sterilization or needed veterinary care.

MISSISSIPPI

Counties/municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

MISSOURI

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

MONTANA

Counties/cities/towns have jurisdiction over animal control.

NEBRASKA

Cities have jurisdiction over animal control.

NEVADA

Counties/cities have jurisdiction over animal control.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

State law prohibits release of animals:

 

TITLE XL. AGRICULTURE, HORTICULTURE AND ANIMAL HUSBANDRY
CHAPTER 437. SALE OF PETS AND DISPOSITION OF UNCLAIMED ANIMALS
UNCLAIMED AND ABANDONED ANIMALS
RSA 437:22 (2002)

437:22. Experimentation and Vivisection Prohibited

I. It shall be unlawful for any agent acting on behalf of an animal shelter facility as defined in RSA 437:2, I, or an animal care center as defined in RSA 437:18, III, to give, release, sell, trade or transfer with or without a fee any live animal brought, caught, detained, obtained or procured by any means, to any association, corporation, individual, educational institution, laboratory, medical facility, or anyone else, for the purpose of experimentation or vivisection.

NEW JERSEY

State law prohibits release of animals:

TITLE 4. AGRICULTURE AND DOMESTIC ANIMALS
CHAPTER 19. DOGS, TAXATION AND LIABILITY FOR INJURIES CAUSED BY
ARTICLE 2. REGISTRATION AND TAGS
N.J. Stat. 4:19-15.16 (2002)

4:19-15.16. Unclaimed dogs to be destroyed, offered for adoption

...No dog or other animal so caught and detained or procured, obtained, sent or brought to a pound or shelter shall be sold or otherwise made available for the purpose of experimentation. Any person who sells or otherwise makes available any such dog or other animal for the purpose of experimentation shall be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree.

NEW MEXICO

Counties/municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

NEW YORK

State law prohibits release of cats and dogs:

AGRICULTURE AND MARKETS LAW
ARTICLE 26. ANIMALS
NY CLS Agr & M 374 (2010)

374. Humane destruction or other disposition of animals lost, strayed, homeless, abandoned or improperly confined or kept

2-e. No person shall release any animal from the custody or control of any pound, duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, duly incorporated humane society, duly incorporated animal protective association, dog or animal control officer, peace officer or any agent thereof, for any purpose except adoption or redemption by its owner; provided, however that such release may be made to another such pound, duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, duly incorporated humane society or duly incorporated animal protective association for the sole purpose of placing such animal in an adoptive home, when such action is reasonably believed to improve the opportunity for adoption or for the purpose of providing temporary shelter pending resolution of litigation involving such animal. Any violation of this subdivision, or subdivision two-a, two-b, two-c or two-d of this section shall constitute a misdemeanor and shall be punishable by imprisonment for not more than one year, or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars, or by both.

Nothing contained in this subdivision shall be construed to limit or restrict the responsibilities or authority otherwise provided for in this section.

5.b. Pursuant to the provisions of [the] subdivisions... of this section, no animal in the custody of a duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, a duly incorporated humane society, duly incorporated animal protective association, pound or its authorized agents thereof, shall be sold, transferred or otherwise made available to any person for the purpose of research, experimentation or testing. No authorized agent of a duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, duly incorporated humane society, duly incorporated animal protective association or pound shall use any animal placed in its custody by the duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to animals or duly incorporated humane society for the purpose of research, experimentation or testing.

PUBLIC HEALTH LAW
ARTICLE 5. LABORATORIES
TITLE I. GENERAL PROVISIONS: STATE LABORATORIES; APPROVED LABORATORIES
NY CLS Pub Health 505-a (2002)

505-a. Purchase of certain animals for scientific tests

It shall be unlawful for any laboratory or institution approved under this article, to purchase any dog or cat for experimental purposes unless the seller thereof shall provide proof of ownership of the animal of a sufficiency prescribed by the commissioner. Every such laboratory or institution shall keep a record of each such purchase with the name and address of the seller and a copy of the proof of ownership given at the time of the transaction.

NORTH CAROLINA

Counties/local authorities have jurisdiction over animal control.

NORTH DAKOTA

Local authorities have jurisdiction over animal control.

OHIO

State law requires the release of dogs:

 

TITLE IX [9] AGRICULTURE -- ANIMALS -- FENCES
CHAPTER 955: DOGS
[IMPOUNDING]
ORC Ann. 955.16 (2004)

955.16 Disposition of dogs; research; inspection by humane society.

(A) Dogs that have been seized by the county dog warden and impounded shall be kept, housed, and fed for three days for the purpose of redemption, as provided by section 955.18 of the Revised Code, unless any of the following applies:

(1) Immediate humane destruction of the dog is necessary because of obvious disease or injury. If the diseased or injured dog is registered, as determined from the current year's registration list maintained by the warden and the county auditor of the county where the dog is registered, the necessity of destroying the dog shall be certified by a licensed veterinarian or a registered veterinary technician. If the dog is not registered, the decision to destroy it shall be made by the warden.

2) The dog is currently registered on the registration list maintained by the warden and the auditor of the county where the dog is registered and the attempts to notify the owner, keeper, or harborer under section 955.12 of the Revised Code have failed, in which case the dog shall be kept, housed, and fed for fourteen days for the purpose of redemption.

(3) The warden has contacted the owner, keeper, or harborer under section 955.12 of the Revised Code, and the owner, keeper, or harborer has requested that the dog remain in the pound or animal shelter until the owner, harborer, or keeper redeems the dog. The time for such redemption shall be not more than forty-eight hours following the end of the appropriate redemption period.

At any time after such periods of redemption, any dog not redeemed shall be donated to any nonprofit special agency that is engaged in the training of dogs to serve as guide or leader dogs for blind persons, hearing dogs for deaf persons, or support dogs for mobility impaired persons and that requests that the dog be donated to it. Any dog not redeemed that is not requested by such an agency may be sold, except that no dog sold to a person other than a nonprofit teaching or research institution or organization of the type described in division (B) of this section shall be discharged from the pound or animal shelter until the animal has been registered and furnished with a valid registration tag.

(B) Any dog that is not redeemed within the applicable period as specified in this section or section 955.12 of the Revised Code from the time notice is mailed to its owner, keeper, or harborer or is posted at the pound or animal shelter, as required by section 955.12 of the Revised Code, and that is not required to be donated to a nonprofit special agency engaged in the training of guide, leader, hearing, or support dogs may, upon payment to the dog warden or poundkeeper of the sum of three dollars, be sold to any nonprofit Ohio institution or organization that is certified by the Ohio public health council as being engaged in teaching or research concerning the prevention and treatment of diseases of human beings or animals. Any dog that is donated to a nonprofit special agency engaged in the training of guide, leader, hearing, or support dogs, in accordance with division (A) of this section and any dog that is sold to any nonprofit teaching or research institution or organization shall be discharged from the pound or animal shelter without registration and may be kept by the agency or by the institution or organization without registration so long as the dog is being trained, or is being used for teaching and research purposes.

Any institution or organization certified by the Ohio public health council that obtains dogs for teaching and research purposes pursuant to this section shall, at all reasonable times, make the dogs available for inspection by agents of the Ohio humane society, appointed pursuant to section 1717.04 of the Revised Code, and agents of county humane societies, appointed pursuant to section 1717.06 of the Revised Code, in order that the agents may prevent the perpetration of any act of cruelty, as defined in section 1717.01 of the Revised Code, to the dogs.

(C) Any dog that the dog warden or poundkeeper is unable to dispose of, in the manner provided by this section and section 955.18 of the Revised Code, may be humanely destroyed, except that no dog shall be destroyed until twenty-four hours after it has been offered to a nonprofit teaching or research institution or organization, as provided in this section, that has made a request for dogs to the dog warden or poundkeeper.

(D) An owner of a dog that is wearing a valid registration tag who presents the dog to the dog warden or poundkeeper may specify in writing that the dog shall not be offered to a nonprofit teaching or research institution or organization, as provided in this section.

OKLAHOMA

State law requires release of animals, unless prohibited by municipality:

 

TITLE 4. ANIMALS
CHAPTER 13. USE OF UNCLAIMED ANIMALS FOR SCIENTIFIC INVESTIGATION AND EDUCATION
4 Okl. St. 394 (2002)

394. Delivery of animals on demand--Municipal ordinances relating to impoundment and scientific research

A. Except as otherwise provided by municipal ordinance, it shall be the duty of the pound supervisor to deliver from among the available impounded animals on the demand of an institution possessing a license, such number of animals as the institution may demand and be reasonably required effectively to carry on its activities, subject to the following conditions:

1. Such animals shall have been impounded at least fifteen (15) days for dogs without a license, and at least thirty (30) days for dogs with license and remained unclaimed and unredeemed by their owners or by any other person desiring the animal as a pet and willing to pay applicable license fees and the reasonable expenses incurred in the dog's detention; and

2. Any owner of an animal who voluntarily delivers the possession of it to a public pound shall have a right to specify that it shall not be used for scientific research, and if an owner so specifies, it shall be the duty of the pound superintendent to tag such animal properly and to make certain that such animal is not delivered to an institution for scientific purposes; and

3. If a demand is made on a pound supervisor for a greater number of dogs than he has available for release to the institution, the supervisor shall withhold thereafter from execution all unclaimed and unredeemed dogs until the demand has been met; and

4. Any animal in the pound to which an identification tag is attached may not be disposed of until the owner has been notified.

B. Any city may adopt an ordinance setting the number of days an animal must be impounded and setting restrictions or prohibitions on the delivery of animals for scientific research.

TITLE 4. ANIMALS
CHAPTER 15. DISPOSAL OF ANIMALS HELD IN SHELTER
4 Okl. St. 501 (2002)

501. Disposal of animals kept for pleasure--Method

A. Any dog, cat or any other animal which is kept for pleasure rather than utility in or about a household, held by or in the custody of a private or public animal shelter or agency and not reclaimed by the owner, may be disposed of only by:

1. Adoption as a pet in a suitable home;

2. Delivery to a licensed educational or research institution in accordance with the provisions of Sections 391 through 402 of this title;...

OREGON

Municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

PENNSYLVANIA

State law prohibits release of animals:

 

PENNSYLVANIA STATUTES
TITLE 3. AGRICULTURE
CHAPTER 8. DOGS
DOG LAW
ARTICLE III. DOGS AT LARGE
3 P.S. 459-302 (2002)

459-302. Seizure and detention of dogs; costs; destruction of dogs

(B) LICENSED DOGS.-- ...No dog so caught and detained shall be sold for the purpose of vivisection, or research, or be conveyed in any manner for these purposes...

(C) UNLICENSED DOGS.--...No dog so caught and detained shall be sold for the purpose of vivisection, or research, or be conveyed in any manner for these purposes.

RHODE ISLAND

State law prohibits release of animals:

 

TITLE 4. ANIMALS AND ANIMAL HUSBANDRY
CHAPTER 19. ANIMAL CARE
R.I. Gen. Laws 4-19-12 (2001)

4-19-12. Disposition of animals

(b) (1) No dog officer shall give or sell or negotiate for the gift or sale to a dealer or research facility of any animal which may come into his or her custody in the course of carrying out his or her official assignments.

SOUTH CAROLINA

State law prohibits the release of animals:

TITLE 47. Animals, Livestock and Poultry
CHAPTER 3. Dogs and Other Domestic Pets
ARTICLE 1. Regulation by Counties and Municipalities (Refs & Annos)
S.C. Code Ann. § 47-3-60 (2002)

§ 47-3-60. Disposition of quarantined or impounded animals.

(A) After any animal has been quarantined pursuant to South Carolina Rabies Control Act and is unclaimed by its owner, after the animal shelter employees have made a good faith effort to contact the identified owner as required by Section 47-3-540, the animal shelter employees, unless the animal must be kept pending disposition of a criminal or civil trial involving the animal or unless a hearing on the disposition of the animal is held prior to the trial, may dispose of the animal by adoption or by euthanasia or the animal may be turned over to any organization established for the purpose of caring for animals, such as the Humane Society.

(B) After any animal has been impounded for five days and is unclaimed by its owner, and after the animal shelter employees have made a good faith effort to contact the identified owner as required by Section 47-3-540, the animal shelter employees, unless the animal must be kept pending disposition of a criminal or civil trial involving the animal or unless a hearing on the disposition of the animal is held prior to the trial, may dispose of the animal by adoption or by euthanasia or the animal may be turned over to any organization established for the purpose of caring for animals, such as the Humane Society.

(C) Complete records must be kept by shelter officials as to the disposition of all animals impounded.

SOUTH DAKOTA

State allows release of animals:

 

TITLE 40. ANIMALS AND LIVESTOCK
CHAPTER 40-1. CRUELTY, ABUSE AND INJURY TO ANIMALS
S.D. Codified Laws 40-1-34 (2002)

40-1-34. Disposition of impounded animals

An animal impounded under this chapter shall, within reasonable time at the direction of the board, any agent or officer of a humane society or any peace officer be disposed of by:

(1) Returning to the owner or caretaker; (2) Transferring ownership to a humane society as described in chapter 40-2; (3) Euthanizing; (4) Sold through public auction; (5) Transferring ownership to a suitable caretaker or facility as prescribed in rule by the board; or (6) Any other disposition as determined by the board, any agent or officer of a humane society or any peace officer in accordance with rules promulgated pursuant to 40-1-25.

TITLE 34. PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY
CHAPTER 34-14. MEDICAL RESEARCH

S.D. Codified Laws 34-14-8 (2002)

34-14-8. Application for and issuance of license to obtain animals for research

...[I]nstitutions may apply to the state department of health for a license to obtain animals from establishments maintained by or for municipalities for the impounding, care and disposal of animals seized by lawful authority. However, no such establishment may be required to furnish animals to such institutions...

TENNESSEE

State allows release of cats and dogs:

 

TITLE 44. ANIMALS AND ANIMAL HUSBANDRY
CHAPTER 17. DOGS AND CATS
PART 1. DOG AND CAT DEALERS
Tenn. Code Ann. 44-17-112 (2001)

44-17-112. Sales of dogs and cats to research facilities -- Restrictions

Dogs and cats shall not be offered for sale or sold to a research facility at public auction or by weight. No research facility shall purchase dogs or cats at public auction or by weight, nor shall any research facility purchase dogs or cats except from a licensed dealer, public pound, humane society, or from a person who breeds dogs or cats for sale to a research facility.

TEXAS

Counties/municipalities have jurisdiction over animal control.

 

See Dallas "Pound Seizure Update" from Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

UTAH

State allows release of animals:

 

TITLE 26. UTAH HEALTH CODE
CHAPTER 26. EXPERIMENTAL ANIMALS
Utah Code Ann. § 26-26-3 & 4 (2010)

§ 26-26-3. Minimum period of impoundment -- Efforts required to contact owner and to make animal available -- Prerogative of person voluntarily providing animal.

(1) Subject to Subsection (2), the governing body of the county or municipality in which an establishment is located may make available to an authorized institution as many impounded animals in that establishment as the institution may request.

(2) A governing body described in Subsection (1) may not make an impounded animal available to an institution, unless:

(a) the animal has been legally impounded for the longer of: (i) at least five days; or (ii) the minimum period provided for by local ordinance;

(b) the animal has not been claimed or redeemed by: (i) the animal's owner; or (ii) any other person entitled to claim or redeem the animal; and

(c) the establishment has made a reasonable effort to: (i) find the rightful owner of the animal, including checking if the animal has a tag or microchip; and (ii) if the owner is not found, make the animal available to others during the impound period. Owners of animals who voluntarily provide their animals to an establishment may, by signature, determine whether or not the animal may be provided to an institution or used for research or educational purposes.

§ 26-26-4. Institution to pay transportation expense -- Restrictions on use of animals -- Fee

The authorized institution shall provide, at its own expense, for the transportation of such animals from the establishment to the institution and shall use them only in the conduct of scientific and educational activities and for no other purpose. The institution shall reimburse the establishment for animals received. The fee shall be, at a minimum, $ 15 for cats and $ 20 for dogs. That fee shall be increased as determined by the department, based on fluctuations or changes in the Consumer Price Index.

Good News: Utah takes steps to protect former pets

VERMONT

State law prohibits release of animals:

 

TITLE THIRTEEN. CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
PART 1. CRIMES
CHAPTER 8. HUMANE AND PROPER TREATMENT OF ANIMALS
SUBCHAPTER 1. CRUELTY TO ANIMALS
13 V.S.A. 352 (2001)

352. Cruelty to animals

A person commits the crime of cruelty to animals if the person:...(7) as poundkeeper, officer, 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;...

VIRGINIA

Virginia prohibits the release of animals:

TITLE 3.2. Agriculture, Animal Care, and Food (Refs & Annos) SUBTITLE V. Domestic Animals
CHAPTER 65. Comprehensive Animal Care
ARTICLE 6. Authority of Local Governing Bodies (Refs & Annos)
Va. Code Ann. § 3.2-6546; § 3.2-6547; § 3.2-6557 (2008)

§ 3.2-6546. County or city pounds; confinement and disposition of animals; affiliation with foster care providers; penalties; injunctive relief

C. An animal confined pursuant to this section shall be kept for a period of not less than five days, such period to commence on the day immediately following the day the animal is initially confined in the facility, unless sooner claimed by the rightful owner thereof.

The operator or custodian of the pound shall make a reasonable effort to ascertain whether the animal has a collar, tag, license, tattoo, or other form of identification. If such identification is found on the animal, the animal shall be held for an additional five days, unless sooner claimed by the rightful owner. If the rightful owner of the animal can be readily identified, the operator or custodian of the pound shall make a reasonable effort to notify the owner of the animal's confinement within the next 48 hours following its confinement.

If any animal confined pursuant to this section is claimed by its rightful owner, such owner may be charged with the actual expenses incurred in keeping the animal impounded. In addition to this and any other fees that might be levied, the locality may, after a public hearing, adopt an ordinance to charge the owner of an animal a fee for impoundment and increased fees for subsequent impoundments of the same animal.

D. If an animal confined pursuant to this section has not been claimed upon expiration of the appropriate holding period as provided by subsection C, it shall be deemed abandoned and become the property of the pound.

Such animal may be euthanized in accordance with the methods approved by the State Veterinarian or disposed of by the methods set forth in subdivisions 1 through 5. No pound shall release more than two animals or a family of animals during any 30-day period to any one person under subdivisions 2, 3, or 4.

1. Release to any humane society, animal shelter, or other releasing agency within the Commonwealth, provided that each humane society, animal shelter, or other releasing agency obtains a signed statement from each of its directors, operators, staff, or animal caregivers specifying that each individual has never been convicted of animal cruelty, neglect, or abandonment and updates such statements as changes occur;

2. Adoption by a resident of the county or city where the pound is operated and who will pay the required license fee, if any, on such animal, provided that such resident has read and signed a statement specifying that he has never been convicted of animal cruelty, neglect, or abandonment;

3. Adoption by a resident of an adjacent political subdivision of the Commonwealth, if the resident has read and signed a statement specifying that he has never been convicted of animal cruelty, neglect, or abandonment;

4. Adoption by any other person, provided that such person has read and signed a statement specifying that he has never been convicted of animal cruelty, neglect, or abandonment, and provided that no dog or cat may be adopted by any person who is not a resident of the county or city where the pound is operated, or of an adjacent political subdivision, unless the dog or cat is first sterilized, and the pound may require that the sterilization be done at the expense of the person adopting the dog or cat; or

5. Release for the purposes of adoption or euthanasia only, to an animal shelter, or any other releasing agency located in and lawfully operating under the laws of another state, provided that such animal shelter, or other releasing agency: (i) maintains records that would comply with § 3.2-6557; (ii) requires that adopted dogs and cats be sterilized; (iii) obtains a signed statement from each of its directors, operators, staff, and animal caregivers specifying that each individual has never been convicted of animal cruelty, neglect, or abandonment, and updates such statement as changes occur; and (iv) has provided to the pound, animal shelter, or other releasing agency within the Commonwealth a statement signed by an authorized representative specifying the entity's compliance with clauses (i) through (iii), and the provisions of adequate care and performance of humane euthanasia, as necessary in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

For purposes of recordkeeping, release of an animal by a pound to a pound, animal shelter or other releasing agency shall be considered a transfer and not an adoption. If the animal is not first sterilized, the responsibility for sterilizing the animal transfers to the receiving entity.

Any proceeds deriving from the gift, sale, or delivery of such animals shall be paid directly to the treasurer of the locality. Any proceeds deriving from the gift, sale, or delivery of such animals by an animal shelter or other releasing agency shall be paid directly to the clerk or treasurer of the animal shelter or other releasing agency for the expenses of the society and expenses incident to any agreement concerning the disposing of such animal. No part of the proceeds shall accrue to any individual except for the aforementioned purposes.

K. The governing body shall require that the pound be operated in accordance with regulations issued by the Board. If this chapter or such regulations are violated, the locality may be assessed a civil penalty by the Board or its designee in an amount that does not exceed $1,000 per violation. Each day of the violation is a separate offense. In determining the amount of any civil penalty, the Board or its designee shall consider: (i) the history of previous violations at the pound; (ii) whether the violation has caused injury to, death or suffering of, an animal; and (iii) the demonstrated good faith of the locality to achieve compliance after notification of the violation. All civil penalties assessed under this section shall be recovered in a civil action brought by the Attorney General in the name of the Commonwealth. Such civil penalties shall be paid into a special fund in the state treasury to the credit of the Department to be used in carrying out the purposes of this chapter.

L. If this chapter or any laws governing pounds are violated, the Commissioner may bring an action to enjoin the violation or threatened violation of this chapter or the regulations pursuant thereto regarding pounds, in the circuit court where the pound is located. The Commissioner may request the Attorney General to bring such an action, when appropriate.

§ 3.2-6547. Acceptance of animals for research or experimentation; prohibition

No person shall use or accept for the purpose of medical research or experimentation any animal bearing a tag, license, or tattooed identification, unless the individual who owns such animal consents thereto in writing.

§ 3.2-6557. Animal control officers and humane investigators; limitations; records; penalties

A. No animal control officer, humane investigator, humane society or custodian of any pound or animal shelter shall: (i) obtain the release or transfer of an animal by the animal's owner to such animal control officer, humane investigator, humane society or custodian for personal gain; or (ii) give or sell or negotiate for the gift or sale to any individual, pet shop, dealer, or research facility of any animal that may come into his custody in the course of carrying out his official assignments. No animal control officer, humane investigator or custodian of any pound or animal shelter shall be granted a dealer's license. Violation of this subsection is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Nothing in this section shall preclude any animal control officer or humane investigator from lawfully impounding any animal pursuant to § 3.2-6569.

C. Any animal control officer or custodian of any pound who violates any provision of this chapter that relates to the seizure, impoundment and custody of animals by an animal control officer may be subject to suspension or dismissal from his position.

 

WASHINGTON

Cities/townships have jurisdiction over animal control.

WEST VIRGINIA

State law prohibits release of cats and dogs:

 

CHAPTER 19. AGRICULTURE
ARTICLE 20. DOGS AND CATS
W. Va. Code 19-20-23 (2001)

19-20-23. Prohibition of the use of impounded dogs and cats

On and after the first day of September, one thousand nine hundred eighty-nine, any dog or cat impounded under the provisions of this article may not be sold, given, transferred or otherwise made available directly or indirectly to any person, institution, corporation or other entity for use in educational or scientific research or related activities. Disposition of impounded dogs or cats may only be by adoption as pets or humanely destroyed. Any person who violates the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than four hundred fifty dollars nor more than two thousand dollars.

WISCONSIN

State law allows release of dogs:

 

POLICE REGULATIONS
CHAPTER 174. DOGS
Wis. Stat. 174.13 (2001)

174.13. Humane use of dogs for scientific or educational purposes.

(2) Any officer or pound which has custody of an unclaimed dog may release the dog to the University of Wisconsin System, the Medical College of Wisconsin, Inc., or to any other educational institution of higher learning chartered under the laws of the state and accredited to the University of Wisconsin System, upon requisition by the institution. The requisition shall be in writing, shall bear the signature of an authorized agent, and shall state that the dog is requisitioned for scientific or educational purposes. If a requisition is made for a greater number of dogs than is available at a given time, the officer or pound may supply those immediately available and may withhold from other disposition all unclaimed dogs coming into the officers or pounds custody until the requisition is fully discharged, excluding impounded dogs as to which ownership is established within a reasonable period. A dog left by its owner for disposition is not considered an unclaimed dog under this section. If operated by a county, city, village or town, the officer or pound is entitled to the payment of $ 1 for each dog requisitioned. An institution making a requisition shall provide for the transportation of the dog.

...(4) It shall be unlawful for any person, except a person licensed or registered and regulated under federal animal welfare laws, to take or send outside the state or to purchase or otherwise acquire in this state for the purpose of taking or sending outside the state, any living cat or dog to be used for any medical, surgical or chemical investigation, experiment or demonstration.

WASHINGTON, DC

Law prohibits release of animals:

 

District of Columbia Official Code 2001
Division I. Government of District.
Title 8. Environmental and Animal Control and Protection
Subtitle E. Animal Control and Protection.
Chapter 18. Animal Control.
Subchapter III. Release of Animals.

8-1831.01. Release of animals.

(a) No person shall release an animal from the custody or control of any entity charged with animal protection for any purpose except adoption or to improve the opportunity for adoption, redemption by the owner of the animal, or other suitable placement in the best interest of the animal. No animals shall be knowingly released from any entity charged with animal protection for the purposes of research, experimentation, testing, or medical instruction or demonstration.

(b) A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 180 days, a fine of not more than $1,000, or both.

WYOMING

Cities/towns have jurisdiction over animal control.