Texas Lawmakers Propose Animal Abuser Registry

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Texas state Reps. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, and Beverly Woolley, R-Houston, have both said they plan to file a new bill to help protect animals by creating an online animal abuser registry. After one felony, any animal abuser 17 or older would become part of this new registry for a decade, required to report to local law enforcement each year, or every three months for repeat offenders.

Anyone with internet access would be able to enter their own address and retrieve information about known animal abusers in local communities, similar to existing sex offender registries. One hurdle in passing the bill is cost – the state spends well over a million dollars annually to maintain a sex offender registry, and with budgets tightening, proponents of the bill will have to make a strong case for funding.

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33 thoughts on “Texas Lawmakers Propose Animal Abuser Registry”

  1. It probably isn’t possible in today’s privacy-oriented/desperate economic culture, but I personally would like to see a national registry. Many hoarders simply move across a state’s borders and start all over again, that’s what happened here in Oregon the horse and dog hoarder just relocated thirty miles east over the Idaho border and accumulated animals once again, maybe even quicker. Law enforcement seems to lack motivation in many animal cruelty and neglect situations, perhaps a national registry would help provide stronger motivation to deal with the problem if it were shown that in multiple states the same abuser had a conviction and/or at least an arrest record or formal complaints. A lot of the horse people have tried to share information over the internet about known equine hoarding, neglect and cruelty but have experienced threats of lawsuits – or worse – and some of their websites have been hacked or completely taken down in revenge. Amazing to me that these animal abusers are so desperate to feed their “habituation” (e.g., habituation to cruelty is well documented in research) that they will attack human targets in an attempt to continue abusing!

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  2. I hope this registry can be implemented. There is a connection between animal abusers and child abusers, I would like to know who my neighbors really are. Abusing animals is the worst thing there is because they don’t have a voice other than screams of pain. If Texas passes this bill a lot of other states in the South will follow.

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  3. I live in GB and firmly believe that this bill should be applied all over the world. No matter where you live there is never an excuse for abusing animals…because they cannot talk they’re an easy target but…this does very often lead to abuse of children and even adults, though these are usually the more vulnerable members of society ie…older people,disabled people. These abusers are mentally sick and physical cowards. Give them what they dish out and they will maybe realise what they are inflicting on defenceless creatures is very, very wrong…..and ever so painfull.
    If you need someone to inflict pain on them…..!!!!!!!!
    Good luck with the bill.

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  4. Wow, I can’t remember seeing another set of comments in which 100% of 10 posters got it wrong. I don’t blame you: there’s a whole lot of misinformation out there. However this is important enough that we should consider facts, rather than just the drivel from the human-haters:

    1. Nobody thinks animal abuse is okay, but almost none of the people convicted of it these days actually hurt any animal. What most of them did was (a) make someone in animal control mad (that often takes no more than breeding dogs) and then (b) be less than absolutely perfect in the care of their animals.

    In other words, I’m sure everyone here is thinking that this registry would have names of people who set fire to dogs, but those cases are VERY RARE, compared to the number of people convicted of abuse for having over a day’s worth of crap in an enclosure (no harm to dog) or very dirty dog ‘crates.’ Yeah, we should all be perfect housekeepers. We absolutely SHOULD. But isn’t listing on an animal abusers registry an excessive punishment?

    2. These registries AREN’T to help people know who is an abuser: They are to help prosecutors get plea bargains (you know, you agree that you are guilty) in 100% of cases. That way you have no chance to prove that you are innocent.

    Would YOU risk ten years of death threats, slashed tires, hang-up calls, your kids not being able to play with any other kids in the neighborhood (and more) just because you are innocent?

    3. Sex offender registries (on which this idea is modelled) have been around for a while. Guess what: They don’t work. That is, areas that have such registries have the same number and kind of sex crimes as areas that don’t have them.

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  5. Pretty shocking to see a quote that we live in a “privacy oriented society” as if that were a BAD thing.
    This country was founded on the right to privacy. and based upon the fact that citizens of this country have rights..Many countries, notably Nazi Germany, found that it was very easy to implement a “registry” of undesirables .. once that occurred it was even easier to get neighbors and “friends” to report these people to the “authorities” and we all know where that led..
    Animal abuse is now being compared to sexual abuse. Violent RAPE is being equated with a person being charged with a person who has dog feces in their yard or someone who has too many dogs. or cats.. or rats..
    Animal abuse is wrong and it is punished but a registry for those charged.. or even convicted is not necessary or even desirable.
    By the way.. “hoarding ” is a disease.. not a crime and should be treated as such.
    There is not registry for MURDERERS so why one for animal abuse.?

    Say no to laws like this that abridge our freedoms and incite people to further violence. I have read that people want this law so they can “take revenge’ on the people on the “list”. We live in a country based on LAW.. not on vigilantism.. would you like for that to change? I for one would not.

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  6. from Thomas Paine:
    “An avidity to punish is always dangerous to liberty – It leads men to stretch, to misinterpret, and to misapply even the best of laws – He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.”
    This is why I am opposed to the “animal abuser” list.

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