SAN FRANCISCO, CA - Following a detailed comparative analysis of the animal prosecution laws of each state in the country, the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) has released a new report ranking all fifty states and the District of Columbia for the general comprehensiveness and relative strength of their respective animal protection laws, and Arkansas is one of the worst on the list. Based on more than 2,800 pages of statutes and tracking 14 distinct categories of provisions, the report recognizes the states where laws protecting animals have real teeth, and calls out those like Arkansas, "where animal abusers get off easy." Along with Arkansas, Alaska, Kentucky, North Dakota, and Utah round out the unsavory list of the five "best states to be an animal abuser."
Why is Arkansas in the dog house when it comes to getting tough on animal abusers? Among other weaknesses in its animal protection laws, Arkansas has no felony animal cruelty provision, "inadequate" animal fighting provisions, "insufficient" provisions to help offset the high costs of caring for abused animals, and no restrictions on the future ownership of animals for those convicted of cruelty to animals.