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What are the legal standards for the size of dog cages?

Q:

I know of a dog who is left in a cage that is too small. How do I tell if it is too small by legal standards? Also, the owner leaves her in the cage for 8 or more hours a day; a minimum of 2 days a week. Is this neglect?

A:

I suggest you contact your local humane society and the Illinois Department of Agriculture to request that an investigation be conducted. The investigator (if he/she gains access) can assess the dog’s condition and whether there is a violation of the animal protection laws. Illinois (as does every state) has laws prohibiting animal abuse and neglect. Laws regulating cage size generally pertain to animals kept by pet dealers/stores/laboratories. Illinois’ general animal cruelty law specifically requires “owners” to provide animals with adequate shelter and humane care and treatment. Based on the conditions the animal is kept in and the condition of the animal, the investigator can determine if there is a violation of the law. If, for example, there is inadequate room for the dog to stand up and turn around or if the dog is lying in his/her excrement, an investigator may very well find that there is a violation of the law. Also, investigators can and often do educate animal guardians about humane care so even if a summons is not issued, sometimes conditions improve based on the investigator’s input. It is wonderful that you are looking out for this dog. Please follow-up with the investigator.


Submitted by Anonymous
Answered by Elinor Molbegott

 

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