- To avoid the awkwardness of referring to both female and male pronouns throughout the text, we have adopted the convention of using the masculine pronouns to encompass both genders. Thus, wherever you see "his" or "he" used, please understand that it refers to both men and women.
- Wherever possible, we have provided examples of actual case-related documents, such as search warrants, affidavits, etc; however, to protect us as well as the law enforcement and humane agents involved from the possibility of any litigation, we have obscured the names of any agents and defendants from the documentation.
- Throughout this manual, wherever we refer to the "owner," the term includes anyone responsible for the care and well being of the animal, as well as the owner himself. Title 13, Vermont's criminal statute, is written in broad language (see Chapter 7, "Various Vermont Laws Dealing With Animals"). Thus, we believe anyone responsible for the care and well being of the animal can be charged with animal cruelty if the animal is abused or neglected.
- Whenever reference is made to arresting a suspect, we are speaking only to law enforcement officers who have arrest powers in the state of Vermont.
We have provided two Vermont legislative statutes relating to animals.
Title 13: Crimes and Criminal Procedure defines criminal violations of Vermont state law.
Title 20: Internal Security and Public Safety, Part 8, Animals defines civil violations of Vermont state law.
Whenever sections of Title 13 are referenced in the manual, we are referring to Chapter 8, Humane and Proper Treatment of Animals. Under Title 20, we have included Chapters 191 (Control Generally), 193 (Domestic Pet or Wolf-Hybrid Control), 194 (Welfare of Animals) and 199 (Sale of Dogs and Cats).
Laws may change each year. Thus, to stay current with the animal cruelty laws and animal control laws, you can download the most current legislative statutes from www.leg.state.vt.us, Vermont Statutes. Updated versions of Chapter 7, Various VT Laws Dealing with Animals, can be downloaded off our website at www.vactf.org.
The HSUS New England Regional Office
PO Box 619
Jacksonville, VT 05342