The Animal League Defense Fund has published a report detailing which states they consider to be the worst and best for animals.
In their top five worst:
One of the reasons they cite for defining these states as the worst in the nation for animals is the lack of a felony provision for animal cruelty, neglect or abandonment. Animal abuse is not taken seriously here, because the types of legal punishment for the crimes are not nearly strong enough and therefore are not effective deterrents. It is almost as if the culture or political climate is not recognizing animal abuse as existing as an important social problem.
Another key absence that could contribute to a negative or negligent attitude towards animals is the lack of mental health evaluation and counseling for animal abusers. Animal abuse and neglect can indicate a mental health problem – but if it is not diagnosed and treated the destructive behavior is likely to continue. Another missing element from these states’ animal policies is no forfeiture of abused animals. Lawful removal of animals from people who abuse them seems like the most effective way of immediately halting abuse, but without intervention, what stops an abuser from continuing? These are just some of the reasons the five states listed above were defined as the worst for animals.
Their top five best states for animals were rated so, because they do have laws punishing abusers appropriately, and for animal protection.
Top five best:
For example, for the first four states repeat animal abusers are subject to increasing penalties, and they all have felony provisions for abusers. They all allow forfeiture of abused animals to protect
them, and some allow for pre-conviction forfeiture.
If you would like to read the full report, you can download the PDF.