2011 Connecticut Code
Title 29 Public Safety and State Police
Chapter 530a Connecticut Humane Society
Sec. 29-108e. (Formerly Sec. 17-27). Detention and disposition of neglected or cruelly treated animals.

      Sec. 29-108e. (Formerly Sec. 17-27). Detention and disposition of neglected or cruelly treated animals. (a) Any officer or agent of the Connecticut Humane Society may lawfully take charge of any animal found neglected or cruelly treated, in violation of sections 22-366, 22-415 and 53-247 to 53-252, inclusive, and shall thereupon proceed as provided in subsection (b) of this section, except that if, in the opinion of a licensed veterinarian, such animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed immediately, such officer or agent may humanely destroy or cause such animal to be humanely destroyed.

      (b) Such officer or agent shall file with the superior court which has venue over such matter a verified petition plainly stating such facts as to bring such animal within the jurisdiction of the court and praying for appropriate action by the court in accordance with the provisions of this section. Upon the filing of such petition the court shall cause a summons to be issued requiring the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal, if known, to appear in court at the time and place named, which summons shall be served not less than fourteen days before the date of the hearing. If the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal is not known, notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given by publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the town in which the society took charge of such animal not less than fourteen days before the date of the hearing. Such court shall further give notice to the petitioner of the time and place of the hearing not less than fourteen days before the date of the hearing.

      (c) If it appears from the allegations of the petition and other affirmations of fact accompanying the petition, or provided subsequent thereto, that there is reasonable cause to find that the animal's condition or the circumstances surrounding its care require that its custody be immediately assumed to safeguard its welfare, the court shall either (1) issue an order to the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal to show cause at such time as the court may designate why the court shall not vest in some suitable agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition or (2) issue an order vesting in some suitable agency or person the animal's temporary care and custody pending a hearing on the petition which hearing shall be held within ten days from the issuance of such order on the need for such temporary care and custody. The service of such orders may be made by any officer authorized by law to serve process, state police officer or indifferent person.

      (d) (1) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is neglected or cruelly treated, it may vest ownership of the animal in any private or public agency which is permitted by law to care for neglected or cruelly treated animals or with any person found to be suitable or worthy of such responsibility by the court.

      (2) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is so injured or diseased that it should be destroyed, the court may order that such animal be humanely destroyed.

      (3) If, after hearing, the court finds that the animal is not neglected or cruelly treated, it may cause the animal to be returned to its owner or owners or person having responsibility for its care or, if such owner or owners or person is unknown or unwilling to resume caring for such animal, it may vest ownership of the animal in any private or public agency or person found to be suitable or worthy of such responsibility.

      (e) Unless the court finds that the animal is not neglected or cruelly treated, the expense incurred by the society in providing proper food, shelter and care to an animal it has taken charge of under subsection (a) of this section and the expense incurred by an agency or person in providing temporary care and custody to an animal under subsection (c) of this section shall be paid by the owner or owners or person having responsibility for the care of the animal and the society or such agency or person shall have a lien upon such animal for such expense.

      (1949 Rev., S. 2920; P.A. 88-325, S. 3; P.A. 92-242, S. 1.)

      History: P.A. 88-325 removed "abandoned" from the description of animals the society may take charge of and that specified notice be by registered or certified mail or by publication in newspaper circulated in town where animal was taken; Sec. 17-27 transferred to Sec. 29-108e in 1989; P.A. 92-242 substantially revised section by amending Subsec. (a) to replace requirement that notice be given to the owner, if known, at his last-known address by registered or certified mail or, if the owner is unknown, by publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the town in which the society took charge of the animal and provision that society may provide for the animal until the owner takes charge of it with the expense of such care and provision being collectible from the owner, with more detailed provisions re custody of neglected or cruelly treated animals, re hearing procedure and re assignment of ownership after hearing and re liability for custodial expenses.

      Cited. 218 C. 757.

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