Prevention of Cruelty and Abuse

As our name implies, one of our main objectives is the prevention of cruelty to animals. We set the example for the community by abiding by both state and local animal control laws and by treating animals above the county’s minimum standards. We try to educate the public to also give care above the minimum standards.

We are authorized to enforce the Maryland State Code, Article 27, Cruelty to Animals, which states that it is unlawful for anyone to deprive an animal of necessary sustenance, or to torture, cruelly beat, mutilate or cruelly kill any animal. Also, the owner or custodian of an animal may not inflict unnecessary suffering or pain upon the animal, or fail to provide it with nutritious food in sufficient quantity, necessary veterinary care, proper drink, air, space, shelter or protection from the weather.

PGSPCA maintains a 24-hour answering service for reports of cruelty or neglect (301-262-5625, line #1). Depending on the season, PGSPCA receives an average of 35 cruelty/neglect complaints a month. Winter and summer are the busiest cruelty seasons: dogs are chained without access to proper shelter in the bitter cold or without access to shade in the blazing heat. When pastures are bare in late winter and spring, horses are starved for lack of grain and hay. Springtime is an unhappy time for the animals and for us, because the pet population grows and grows. Dogs and cats are allowed to breed and have litters, often being abandoned or left to fend for themselves.

Because we are all volunteers (most with full-time jobs), we work cooperatively with the Prince George’s County Animal Management Division (AMD) and report most cruelty complaints to them. The County’s AMD handles these calls as appropriate, sending out their Animal Control Officers if needed. In most of these cases, we follow up later with the County’s AMD, to make sure the situation has been resolved.