It’s a known fact that laws are in place to help protect peoples’ safety and livelihood. But did you know that the United States is also home to a long list of weird and wacky animal laws?
In this blog post, we explore some of the strangest fauna-related regulations found across America — and perhaps you can find one or two close to home.
In Alabama, keeping an ice cream cone in your back pocket is illegal
It's technically illegal in Alabama to put ice cream cones in one’s back pockets. This is because, in old times when horses were the primary mode of transport, horse thieves would place ice cream in their pockets to entice horses away without being deemed criminals. After all, if they did this, they could say that the horse came of its own free will!
Thankfully, Alabama has progressed far beyond such nefarious activities, with horses no longer being the first choice for transport and most people preferring to hold their ice cream cones in their hands.
In Pennsylvania, tethering unattended dogs come with several caveats
If you want to have dogs as pets in Pennsylvania, it will do you well to remember the statute on tethering unattended dogs. According to this law, a dog can be tethered only for less than 9 hours within a 24-hour period. The dog must also have potable water, a shade where it can take refuge, and a tether at least three times the length of the dog. Furthermore, the tether must have an anchor swivel and a well-fitted collar. When temperatures exceed 90°F or drop below 32°F, however, no animal should be chained up for over 30 minutes.
In Arizona, you shouldn’t move a dead fish from one body of water to another
Arizona is definitely a state that takes its wildlife protection seriously, whatever type of wildlife it may be. In fact, they have a specific law that protects the fish living in the state’s waters. Believe it or not, it’s actually illegal to move a dead fish from one body of water to another in Arizona without obtaining prior approval from the Arizona Game and Fish Department.
This is because moving fish from one body of water to another can introduce diseases, parasites, and other harmful organisms that can negatively affect the local aquatic ecosystem. The transportation and release of live fish in Arizona is also regulated by the Arizona Game and Fish Department, and a permit may be required in some cases.
The bottom line? It’s always best to consult with the relevant authorities before moving any fish or other wildlife from one location to another.
In California, it’s unlawful for any adult cat to be unvaccinated against rabies
While all fully grown cats in California are required to be vaccinated against rabies, the specific age requirement varies depending on the county or city. This regulation may seem strange at first, but it can actually save lives, since rabies can be deadly to unvaccinated cats and humans.
So if you have a cat in the Golden State, check with your local animal control agency or veterinarian regarding this law. Failure to comply with the vaccination requirements may result in fines or other penalties.
In Maryland, it’s illegal to mistreat oysters
The next time you’re in Maryland, remember to treat oysters with care and follow all relevant regulations when harvesting or handling them. Oysters are a protected species in the state, and there are strict regulations in place to ensure their preservation and sustainability.
For one, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources regulates the harvesting, handling, and transportation of oysters to ensure that they are treated with utmost care and respect. Mistreating oysters, such as damaging or destroying their shells, can result in fines, penalties, or even the suspension or revocation of harvesting licenses.
Whether concerning animals or humans, the laws across the US can be bizarre at times. So if you’re in Washington and need help to make sense of the law, knock on the doors of Buckingham, LaGrandeur, & Williams. Our attorneys can provide the expertise you need when unforeseen personal troubles arise. Drop us a line today.