THE BRITISH COLUMBIA SOCIETY FOR THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS
Our mission: To protect and enhance the quality of life for domestic, farm and wild animals in B.C.

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Criminal Code of Canada - Animal Cruelty

Please see below for the pertinent sections in the Criminal Code of Canada that are directly related to animal cruelty.

Causing unnecessary suffering

445.1 (1) Every one commits an offence who

(a) wilfully causes or, being the owner, wilfully permits to be caused unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal or a bird;

(b) in any manner encourages, aids or assists at the fighting or baiting of animals or birds;

(c) wilfully, without reasonable excuse, administers a poisonous or an injurious drug or substance to a domestic animal or bird or an animal or a bird wild by nature that is kept in captivity or, being the owner of such an animal or a bird, wilfully permits a poisonous or an injurious drug or substance to be administered to it;

(d) promotes, arranges, conducts, assists in, receives money for or takes part in any meeting, competition, exhibition, pastime, practice, display or event at or in the course of which captive birds are liberated by hand, trap, contrivance or any other means for the purpose of being shot when they are liberated; or

(e) being the owner, occupier or person in charge of any premises, permits the premises or any part thereof to be used for a purpose mentioned in paragraph (d).

Punishment

(2) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than eighteen months or to both.

Failure to exercise reasonable care as evidence

(3) For the purposes of proceedings under paragraph (1)(a), evidence that a person failed to exercise reasonable care or supervision of an animal or a bird thereby causing it pain, suffering or injury is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that the pain, suffering or injury was caused or was permitted to be caused wilfully, as the case may be.

Presence at baiting as evidence

(4) For the purpose of proceedings under paragraph (1)(b), evidence that an accused was present at the fighting or baiting of animals or birds is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that he or she encouraged, aided or assisted at the fighting or baiting.

2008, c. 12, s. 1.

(View the section in the Criminal Code pages of the Department of Justice Canada's website)

Causing damage or injury

446. (1) Every one commits an offence who

(a) by wilful neglect causes damage or injury to animals or birds while they are being driven or conveyed; or

(b) being the owner or the person having the custody or control of a domestic animal or a bird or an animal or a bird wild by nature that is in captivity, abandons it in distress or wilfully neglects or fails to provide suitable and adequate food, water, shelter and care for it.

Punishment

(2) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than six months or to both.

Failure to exercise reasonable care as evidence

(3) For the purposes of proceedings under paragraph (1)(a), evidence that a person failed to exercise reasonable care or supervision of an animal or a bird thereby causing it damage or injury is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that the damage or injury was caused by wilful neglect.

R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 446; 2008, c. 12, s. 1.

(View the section in the Criminal Code pages of the Department of Justice Canada's website)

Keeping cockpit

447. (1) Every one commits an offence who builds, makes, maintains or keeps a cockpit on premises that he or she owns or occupies, or allows a cockpit to be built, made, maintained or kept on such premises.

Punishment

(2) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than eighteen months or to both.

Confiscation

(3) A peace officer who finds cocks in a cockpit or on premises where a cockpit is located shall seize them and take them before a justice who shall order them to be destroyed.

R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 447; 2008, c. 12, s. 1.

(View the section in the Criminal Code pages of the Department of Justice Canada's website)

Order of prohibition or restitution

447.1 (1) The court may, in addition to any other sentence that it may impose under subsection 444(2), 445(2), 445.1(2), 446(2) or 447(2),

(a) make an order prohibiting the accused from owning, having the custody or control of or residing in the same premises as an animal or a bird during any period that the court considers appropriate but, in the case of a second or subsequent offence, for a minimum of five years; and

(b) on application of the Attorney General or on its own motion, order that the accused pay to a person or an organization that has taken care of an animal or a bird as a result of the commission of the offence the reasonable costs that the person or organization incurred in respect of the animal or bird, if the costs are readily ascertainable.

Breach of order

(2) Every one who contravenes an order made under paragraph (1)(a) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

Application

(3) Sections 740 to 741.2 apply, with any modifications that the circumstances require, to orders made under paragraph (1)(b).

2008, c. 12, s. 1.

(View the section in the Criminal Code pages of the Department of Justice Canada's website)

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