Emergency Law Inventory | Full Law Text

Law Number

13 V.S.A. 386

Summary Title

Liability: Saving Animal in Car


A humane officer or a member of a fire and rescue service who uses reasonable force to remove an animal from a motor vehicle when it is in danger will not be held legally responsible for any damage.

Full Title

Confinement of animals in vehicles

Full Text

(a) A person shall not leave an animal unattended in a standing or parked motor vehicle in a manner that would endanger the health or safety of the animal. (b) Any humane officer or member of a fire and rescue service may use reasonable force to remove any such animal from a motor vehicle. The officer so removing an animal shall deliver the animal to a humane society, veterinarian or town or municipal pound. If the owner of the animal cannot be found, the officer shall place a written notice in the vehicle, bearing the name of the officer and the department and address where the animal may be claimed. The owner shall be liable for reasonable expenses, and a lien may be placed on the animal for these expenses. The officer may not be held liable for criminal or civil liability for any damage resulting from actions taken under subsection (a) of this section. (c) Failure to comply with subsection (a) of this section is a violation of subdivision 352(3) of this title.