15.14.15.02

.02 Definitions.

A. In this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated.

B. Terms Defined.

(1)"Animal" means a living creature except a human being that is privately owned, strays, domesticated, feral, farm animals, corporately or institutionally owned, or used in privately, locally, State, or federally funded activities.

(2) "Animal cruelty" means:

(a) Overdriving, overloading, torturing, tormenting, or cruelly beating an animal, depriving an animal of necessary sustenance, or causing, procuring, or authorizing these acts;

(b) Inflicting unnecessary suffering or pain upon an animal;

(c) If a person has charge or custody of an animal, as owner or otherwise, unnecessarily failing to provide an animal with nutritious food in sufficient quantity, necessary veterinary care, proper drink, air, space, shelter, or protection from the weather;

(d) Using or permitting to be used any bird, fowl, or cock for the purpose of fighting with any other animal, which is commonly known as cockfighting;

(e) Using or permitting to be used any dog for the purpose of fighting with any other animal; or

(f) Any conduct that violates Criminal Law Article, §§10-604, 10-606, 10-607, and 10-608, Annotated Code of Maryland.

(3) "Board" means the State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners.

(4) "Has reason to believe" means that a veterinarian suspects but may not actually know that an animal has been subject to cruelty.

(5) "Law enforcement agency" means the local law enforcement or animal control agency that enforces animal cruelty laws.

(6) "Reports in good faith" means that a veterinarian has filed the report with a sincere and honest intention.

(7) "Timely" means as soon as possible but no later than 24 hours from the time that a veterinarian has reason to believe of possible animal cruelty.

(8) "Veterinarian" means a licensed and registered veterinarian engaged in the practice of veterinary medicine.