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Animal Law

Foreign and International

Foreign Research Tips

  • Use country-specific research guides to understand foreign legal systems and identify major primary and secondary sources. GlobaLex and Library of Congress are good starting points.
  • Copy and paste website URLs into Google Translate to automatically translate them.
  • When using Google to find foreign law documents, you can narrow a search to a specific website with the "site:" search command. For example:
    • “laboratory animals”
    • "animal welfare"

Foreign Animal Law Resources


International Research Tips

  • There is no single source for finding, retrieving, and updating treaties and international agreements.  Researchers will often need to be creative and consult several sources when researching a particular treaty. 
  • For finding treaties to which the U.S. is a party, try using HeinOnline's U.S. Treaties and Agreements Library.
  • Many multilateral treaties can be found using the United Nations Treaty Series Online database.

Major International Agreements

Proposed International Agreements

Animal Ownership after Animal Cruelty Conviction

How to Find State Laws:

  • The easiest way to access state laws is online. In your search engine, type in your state’s name and the words “state government.” This will bring up the official website of your state.
    • On your state’s website, look for the legislative branch’s web page. That is where laws and bills are housed. Once you are there, locate your state’s code of statutes and search through the articles that typically contain animal laws, such as criminal law, agriculture, public health, and environment.

How to Find Local Laws:

Local laws (also called ordinances) are established by local governments to address unique issues within their community. 

  • Many local governments post their ordinances on their website. 
  • Check whether your local animal shelter or animal control has a website. If it does, the local animal laws may be posted there.
  • Several websites track local governments’ laws, including: Municipal Code Corporation and eCodes

Animal Welfare and Food Labeling

Poaching Laws

Puppy Mill Laws