Animal Cruelty

If you think someone is abusing animals, you can help. The best thing you can do is report cruelty.


Anyone wishing to report animal abuse in their neighborhoods can call Crime Stoppers. Crime Stoppers offers rewards of up to $2,500 for tips - including those reported anonymously - that lead to arrests and indictments for animal cruelty cases in the city Crime Stoppers hotline is 1-800-577-TIPS or online at All calls are kept confidential. NYC residents may also call 311 to report suspected animal cruelty.

To report crimes in progress in any borough, please call 911.

Top 10 Tips for Reporting Animal Cruelty

Animal cruelty occurs when someone intentionally injures or harms an animal or when a person willfully deprives an animal of food, water or necessary medical care. Here are some signs that may indicate abuse or neglect:

  • Wounds on the body
  • Patches of missing hair
  • Extremely thin, starving animal
  • Limping
  • An owner striking or otherwise physically abusing an animal
  • Dogs who are repeatedly left alone without food and water, and often chained in a yard
  • Dogs who have been hit by cars-or are showing any of the signs listed here-and have not been taken to a veterinarian
  • Dogs who are kept outside without shelter in extreme weather conditions

New York State law makes the following illegal under its animal cruelty and related laws for any animal, including strays and wildlife:

  • Animal fighting
  • Injuring, maiming, or killing any animal
  • Depriving an animal of necessary food or drink
  • Failure to provide adequate shelter (for dogs left outdoors)

Although ACC does not have law enforcement powers, we are key players in the documentation, investigation, and prosecution of animal cruelty cases. ACC field officers are often the first responders on scene where evidence of animal cruelty may be present and we provide care for hundreds of animals each year who have been the victims of abuse and neglect.

Animal Hoarding

Animal hoarding is harmful to the welfare of both humans and animals. In every state, animal hoarders can be prosecuted under animal cruelty laws that require owners of companion animals to provide proper care for their animals. Because failure to provide proper care for animals is an act of omission or neglect rather than an affirmative act, animal hoarding is considered a misdemeanor offense in most states.

If you suspect that someone you know may be involved in hoarding, please call 311 or Crime Stoppers hotline 1-800-577-TIPS or online at All calls are kept confidential.

For more information about animal hoarding and the law please click here.