Make Animal Cruelty a Felony


Target: Ohio Governor John Kasich

Goal: Make animal abuse a felony for first-time offenders.

Animal abusers will no longer be able to escape with minor punishments if a new law in Ohio is approved. Under the new law, any knowing harm inflicted on a pet would be classified as a fifth-degree felony, even for first-time offenders.

A bipartisan effort sponsored by Reps. Bill Patmon and Dave Hall, House Bill 60 is known as “Goddard’s Law” in honor of Cleveland weatherman and long-time animal rights activist Dick Goddard. The bill passed unanimously through the state Senate and now heads to Governor John Kasich.

Ohio is one of the only states that does not have a felony provision for first offenses, and because of this countless abusers have gone unpunished. In a recent case, a man was given a simple misdemeanor for throwing a puppy off a cliff twice. Sign the petition below and urge Governor Kasich to approve this important bill and protect pets across the state.


Dear Mr. Kasich,

I am writing to call your attention to House Bill 60, also known as Goddard’s Law. If approved, this bill would categorize any knowing harm inflicted on a pet as a fifth-degree felony. even for first-time offenders. Ohio is one of the only states that does not issue felonies for first offenses, and because of this a number of horrific abuse cases have concluded with misdemeanors.

Goddard’s Law enjoys strong bipartisan support, as it passed unanimously through the state Senate and is co-sponsored by a Republican and a Democrat. I urge you to protect innocent animals across the state and sign this bill into law.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Andrea Schaffer

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  1. Linda Hilty-Tuttle says:

    We MUST abolish animal abuse. We must do everything we can to put a stop to it, once and for all!!!

  2. Gamin Davis says:

    It’s a felony in my state of Arkansas and it SHOULD be a felony in every state in America. I supported Kasich for President and he seems like a good guy–I believe he will do the right thing and sign off on this bill. Crossing my fingers.

  3. Bev Woodburn says:

    Animal abuse and deliberate torture of helpless and innocent animals must be stopped and banned Worldwide. The unimaginable abuse and torture committed against innocent and defenceless animals Worldwide is an abomination.
    The human species f—-.

  4. Lisa Zarafonetis Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    Signed & Shared. ?

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