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Committee on Animal Law

The Animal Law Committee is the nation’s first bar association animal law committee. It regularly addresses legal, regulatory and policy issues on a local, state and national level affecting non-human animals, both wild and domestic.  At the NYC level, the Animal Law Committee has taken positions on issues such as horse-drawn carriages, pets in housing, anti-tethering of dogs and use of wild and exotic animals in entertainment.  At the state level, the Animal Law Committee has taken positions over the years on  many issues such as animal cruelty, concentrated farming operations and confinement of animals, canned hunting, force feeding of animals for foie gras production, electrocution of fur-bearing animals, tail docking, devocalization of companion animals, and required fire safety for animals kept by pet dealers.  At the federal level, the Committee takes positions on matters governed by statute (e.g., the Animal Welfare Act (treatment of animals in research, exhibition, transport, and by dealers), the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, the Endangered Species Act) and on bills relating to animal health, welfare and safety (e.g., horse slaughter, sanctuary for primates used in experimentation, non-therapeutic use of antibiotics on animals).  Memos are regularly submitted to incoming administrations in Albany and Washington, DC.

Recent Reports

Report on Battlefield Excellence through Superior Training (BEST) Practices Act (March 2015) ( PDF format )
Subject area: Animals Used for Experimentation, including Medical Use of Animals

Comment on Legislation to Prohibit Cruel Treatment of Elephants (March 2015)
( PDF format )
Subject area: Animals in Entertainment/Exhibition

Report on the Pet and Women Safety Act which would extend protection to the pets of victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and dating violence (Reissued March 2015)
Subject area: Companion Animals/Pets


For the full list of committee reports click here

Legislative Activity

For more information on the legislative and policy work of the committee, including relevant reports, bill texts and additional advocacy materials, click here.

Of Interest

Link Between Animal Cruelty and Family Violence: A PowerPoint

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Policy Recommendations for New York City's Next Mayor