Is It A Crime To Hit An Animal?

Whether or not it is a crime to strike an animal depends on whether the person intended to cruelly beat or injure the animal. If the person did, then that constitutes the crime of cruelty to animals and is punishable by jail time and or fines. Other acts that qualify as cruelty to animals are torture, mutilation, killing, and the severe deprivation of food, water, and shelter.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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