My Hunting Dog Wandered Onto A Farmer's Land While We Were Hunting And The Farmer Shot And Killed My Dog. Is This This Legal?
It depends on what your dog was doing while it was on the farmer's land. If your dog was chasing or biting the farmer's livestock (or the owner or the owners family) on the owner's land then the farmer can legally shoot and kill your dog. In addition, the farmer can also then sue you for any damage inflicted on his livestock by your dog. However, under Oklahoma law if your dog was simply running through the farmer's land and the farmer just shoots your dog without any good reason, he could be prosecuted by the state of Oklahoma for committing a felony. In addition, you could sue him for the replacement value of your dog in civil court. The Oklahoma statute that governs cruelty to animals can be found in Title 21, Section 1685 of the Oklahoma State Statute. The full text of the statute is as follows:
Any person who shall willfully or maliciously torture, destroy or kill, or cruelly beat or injure, maim or mutilate any animal in subjugation or captivity, whether wild or tame, and whether belonging to the person or to another, or deprive any such animal of necessary food, drink, shelter, or veterinary care to prevent suffering; or who shall cause, procure or permit any such animal to be so tortured, destroyed or killed, or cruelly beaten or injured, maimed or mutilated, or deprived of necessary food, drink, shelter, or veterinary care to prevent suffering; or who shall willfully set on foot, instigate, engage in, or in any way further any act of cruelty to any animal, or any act tending to produce such cruelty, shall be guilty of a felony and shall be punished by imprisonment in the State Penitentiary not exceeding five (5) years, or by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding one (1) year, or by a fine not exceeding Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00). Any animal so maltreated or abused shall be considered an abused or neglected animal.
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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