PAWS Act cracks down on animal abuse

A first offense can result in up to 7 years in prison

dog death

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Governor Deval Patrick has signed a bill into law that stiffens the penalties for cases of animal cruelty.

The PAWS Act will impose harsher penalties on people who abuse their pets, including up to 7 years in prison for the first offense, and up to 10 years for the second offense. Under the new law, veterinarians will now be required to report suspected cases of animal abuse to police.

Dr. Bill Martin from the East Longmeadow Animal Hospital told 22News, “I think it’s reasonable, it makes sense. Abuse is abuse and I don’t know why anybody would let them get away with anything like this.”

The PAWS Act was filed last year after a pit bull named “Puppy Doe” was found beaten, stabbed, and burned in Quincy.

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