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Click icon to 

download PDF of Minnesota Animal Welfare Statute Guide.

Click icon for online link to  Minnesota Horse

Welfare Guide.

Resources to help horses, horse owners & law enforcement


Certified Rescues

Horse Health and Nutrition 


Feed Assistance Resources

  • Nutrena Rewards

  • Nutrena Special Offers

  • Colorado Hay Bank

  • Michigan Hay Bank

  • Oregon Hay Bank 


Animal Cruelty Laws

The following links will provide you with information on animal welfare related laws, statutes and codes. After review, if your question remains unanswered, please contact the Animal Humane Society’s Humane Investigations at (612) 772-9999 or online.



Animal Welfare Act (AWA)

The Animal Welfare Act is a federal law that governs the transportation, sale and handling of certain animals. More specifically, it ensures that animals are provided with humane care and treatment during transportation, purchase, sale, housing, care, and handling by persons or organizations using them for research or exhibition purposes or as pets. That includes dealers who sell animals to laboratories, animal exhibitors, carriers, and intermediate handlers, dog and cat breeders, puppy mills, zoos, circuses, roadside menageries, and transporters of animals. It excludes retail pet stores, state and county fairs, livestock shows, rodeos, purebred dog and cat shows, and fairs or exhibitions intended to advance agricultural arts and sciences.

The organization charged with enforcing the AWA is the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), a division of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).


A person or organization found in violation of the AWA may face fines and/or imprisonment.


  • Cruelty to Animals – Chapter 343

  • Pet and Companion Welfare Act – Chapter 346

  • Minnesota Exotic Animals – Chapter 346.155


State Resources

  • University of Minnesota Extension

  • University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine


National Resources

  • American Veterinary Medical Association 

    • Animal Welfare: Responsibility and Opportunity

    • State and Local Animal Welfare Issues

  • The Hoarding of Animal Research Consortium 

  • National Link Coalition

  • ASPCA — Fight Cruelty 

  • National Animal Abuse Database

  • Animal Welfare Research Institute 


End-of-life Resources

  • American Association of Equine Practitioners Euthanasia Guidelines

  • University of Minnesota Extension Humane Options

  • University of Minnesota Extension Disposal Summary

  • Minnesota Animal Board of Health Livestock Disposal regulations

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