The Best and Worst States for Animal Rights Might Surprise You

Or, maybe not depending on where you grew up. Animal rights activists have been pushing for better treatment of animals for years, but according to the Animal Legal Defense Fund‘s 2016 animal protection laws rankings, the United States still has a lot of work to do.

The report dug deep into 4,000 pages of animal protection law statuses in 15 different categories, including everything from animal fighting to “ag gag” laws that prevent anyone from doing undercover filming on factory farms. What they found in terms of which states treat animals the best and which treat them the worst was shocking to some and not so much to others.

In Iowa, which came in second to last, you can go to jail for a year just for obtaining access to an agricultural facility under false pretenses. Meanwhile, a handful of states — Florida, Ohio, and Wisconsin — just had a new law enacted where it’s legal to rescue animals from enclosed vehicles after taking certain steps, like calling 9-1-1. Considering dogs can die from heatstroke in as little as 15 minutes when left in a hot car, every second counts — especially when law enforcement can’t get there quick enough.

All in all, when it comes to animal rights, you might want to pack your bags and move to one of these states — or out of some of the others.

The Best States for Animal Protection Laws

1. Illinois
2. Oregon
3. Maine
4. California
5. Rhode Island

The Worst States for Animal Protection Laws

1. Kentucky
2. Iowa
3. Wyoming
4. Utah
5. North Dakota

Keep on fighting for animal rights, because we still have a long way to go. To see where your state ranked, be sure to view the whole report here.

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