NY Law to Target Theft of Family Dog

Boxer Profile

A bill that would make stealing a dog or cat a felony has strong sponsors in the New York Legislature. It is one of the first laws in consideration that would take a much tougher stand on Pet theft hopefully paving the way for other areas to adopt similar legislation.

State Sen. Carl Marcellino and Assemblywoman Deborah Glick say the measure will elevate the crime to grand larceny from a misdemeanor and eliminate the difficult question of placing a value on a pet.

S992-2011: Creates first and second degree pet theft offenses

A person is guilty of pet theft in the second degree when he/she
steals a companion animal or pet, which is defined as a dog, cat or
other domesticated animal normally maintained in or near the
household of the owner or person who cares for such animal. Pet theft
in the second degree is a class E felony and carries a maximum
sentence of four years imprisonment.

A person is guilty of pet theft in the first degree when he/she
commits pet theft in the second degree, and when (1) such animal is
sold for scientific research purposes; or, (2) with no justifiable
purpose, he or she intentionally kills or intentionally causes
serious physical injury to such companion animal or pet with
aggravated cruelty. Pet theft in the first degree is a class D felony
and carries a maximum sentence of seven years imprisonment.

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  1. Why wouldn’t they have more severe penalties for this type of crime ?
    The taking of someone’s pet is more closely related to the term kidnapping than simply stealing. I’m for more severe punishment for all types of criminal behavior that involve any type of animal abuse.

  2. Great. Dogs and Cats are some peoples children..it’s nice to know they will be given due consideration.

  3. Mellissa Hanks says

    I glad to see stiffer laws are going to be put in place.

  4. Interesting and the first I’d heard of this bill. Def. seems appropriate.

  5. Interesting. I can totally understand why this should be punished more severely. My parents dogs are a part of the family in every sense. – katy

  6. Glad to hear this, I feel like it’s a bit overdue. Stealing anything is wrong, especially a family member!

  7. There should be stricter laws for stealing someone’s pet. Pets are a part of the family to many people. Thank you for the post.

  8. I am glad they are putting more laws into effect! This is an interesting post. I have never heard of this before!

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