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City to Introduce Animal Abuse Registry

Dec. 19, 2013 By Christian Murray

The city is about to keep tabs on animal abusers.

The city council passed legislation today — introduced by Council Member Peter F. Vallone Jr. — that will create a registry of animal abusers.

Crimes that would result in inclusion in the registry are animal fighting, abandonment and aggravated cruelty. Those people who are found guilty of such crimes are to included on the registry and would be prohibited from owning an animal.

The legislation comes just two years after Milan Rysa, a bodybuilder from Astoria, killed his dog by tossing it out of a third-floor window. Rysa hurled his Chinese Shar-Pei, weighing about 50 pounds, out of his apartment on Steinway Street, almost hitting two women who were walking by. He was sentenced to a year in prison.

Entities that sell or adopt out pets, such as animal shelters and pet shops, will be required to consult the registry before transferring ownership of any animal in their care. They would be prohibited from transferring ownership to anyone listed on the registry.

Residents convicted of animal abuse crimes would be required to register upon release from incarceration, or if not incarcerated, within five days of sentencing.

First time offenders will remain on the registry for five years and those guilty of subsequent abuses 10 years. Anyone convicted of animal abuse who fails to report to the registry or who owns an animal while listed in the registry faces punishment of up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine.

“This is a Christmas present not only to New York City animals, but animals in all of the areas that will now move forward with similar registries,” said Council Member Vallone. “Abusers are now on a short leash and this registry will help prevent them from being able to torture another animal.”

Vallone is hopeful that other cities introduce similar laws, thereby creating a safer environment for animals across the United States and the world.

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I don’t create a lot of responses, but after browsing a
lot of comments on this page City to introduce animal abuse registry | Sunnyside
Post. I do have 2 questions for you if you don’t mind.
Could it be just me or do a few of the remarks appear like they are
left by brain dead folks? 😛 And, if you are posting at other places, I would like to follow
you. Could you post a list of all of your social community pages like your twitter feed, Facebook page or linkedin profile?

43rd & 43rd

Rick, I guarantee you that many SUDS members live in buildings run by this management company, that has a “no pet” clause but a well-known unofficial policy of acceptance. If none of those people were allowed to adopt dogs, SUDS would be a lot smaller and you wouldn’t have your dog run. And hundreds of dogs would have been put to sleep. That’s not in anyone’s best interests.

Lucky Lu

Rick, can you please provide a link to the news story about the animal control worker hanging a dog? Your post seems to imply that it was someone from NYC Animal Care & Control, but I have googled and found no such story. There are some wonderful animal rescues around, but they also have the luxury of not taking an animal in. Animal Care & Control, under contract from the NYC Department of Health, does not. Sick, aggressive, injured, Animal Care & Control must accept them all. It’s too bad more people don’t volunteer, donate and advocate for these animals and in fact for our city’s municipal shelter so fewer animals have to be euthanized. I find it hard to imagine that the workers at Animal Care & Control take any pleasure in having to euthanize an animal, especially when he or she may be a perfectly good pet if not for the issues of lack of funding, resources and the simply overwhelming number of animals they are forced to receive each year.

Rick Duro

43rd & 43rd,

The overwhelming majority of nyc rescue groups are not hoarding animals. Are there a few folks that hoard amongst them? Of course there are, but they are in the definite minority. They find lots of adopters, people who follow their long processes, paperwork. As in the end it is what is in the best interests of the dog/cat. I have done a lot of work with rescue groups over the years, the ones that rescue a dog/cat from the ACC and then give it to the first person to come for it, no real questions asked, are doing the animals no favors. Many questions need to be asked. These good groups get plenty of applicants, regardless of the length of their questionairre.

Responsible rescue groups don’t adopt to anyone that lives in a building with a ‘no pet’ policy. It’s not good for the dogs, they end up going back and forth, which is senseless. I know many buildings have the unwritten rule that they are allowed, but, why take that chance? Move to a building that allows them.

As for references, people can always lie true, vets don’t.

Sadly, the people that buy dogs @ 46th st don’t want a mutt and probably wouldnt go to a shelter/rescue group anyway. They want the ‘pretty’ pure bred/designer dog and they don’t do their due diligence/homework on that place. That’s why it’s still in business. Thankfully we now have more options for everything else ‘dog/cat’ in Sunnyside.

Having to fill out a few pages of paperwork to adopt a dog or a cat may be a bit of an inconvenience, but I think the time doing so is well spent.



43rd & 43rd

Rick, I understand there are a lot of bad pet owners out there. But I feel that rescues should rely more on a simple conversation, which does a pretty good job of screening out crazies as well as getting factual information. Ask about what happened to other pets I’ve owned, sure, and also see how normal and responsible I seem in person. But what are you going to get from talking to my boss and coworkers? They know nothing about my pets, it’s strange and intrusive, and I honestly don’t know if my boss is going to go for it at all. He wrote me a recommendation letter to get an apartment, but for a cat?

And as for “calling their landlord and finding out pets are not approved”…there are two sides to that. There’s one big management company that owns a LOT of buildings here in Sunnyside. “No pets” is written into their leases, but in reality, they’re totally fine with it. Tons of people in my building have large-breed dogs, multiple cats, etc., and have for decades. But is the management company going to sign a rescue’s official paperwork, probably not. Too bad a rescue won’t see past that, because a resident who can’t get a pet from rescues will probably go to shadier sources. No wonder that awful pet store on 46th is still open.

I think this all plays into the dirty secret that a number of rescue operations are run by hoarders themselves, who hang onto a dozen cats because “nobody else can be trusted to care for them like I do.” I have friends who tried fostering for awhile, and the stories they could tell you!


Rescue operations are also likely to get animal hoarders trying to adopt animals. I think this is more applicable to pet stores–some of which are kind of shady themselves–to help prevent future abuses.

Rick Duro

Rescue groups are smart to have such a lengthy process, otherwise the cycle of pet>Animal Control>death continues. Home visits are essential, as is a call to your vet, if you have had a pet before. Sadly, there are some rescue groups that grab dogs/cats from the shelters and just give them to anyone that wants the dog, without properly vetting the animal and owner. The pet often finds its way back into the system.

A few days ago a couple tried adopting a dog from a local Qns rescue group. The group called their landlord and found out pets were not allowed. This is just one of many examples….

Getting a pet is not a novelty, something that should ever be done on whim or given as a gift. For every person out there that understands the responsibility of owning a pet there are 10 that do not.

GOOD rescue groups want to ensure that the dogs/cats that they have rescued will be properly cared for and not bounced back into the system and will go to a real forever home. Many have been traumatized by the abuse and neglect they have been put through, there is no reason to continue that kind of treatment.

Shame on the rescue groups that do not do sufficient background checks.

Today a couple brought a 3.5 MONTH old yorkie to NYC ACC to surrender. Why? ‘Because it pees everywhere’. Talk about people that should never own an animal….Thankfully, a rescue group swooped in and saved it from NYCACC. They do the real care/control. NYC ACC does NOTHING but collect dogs/cats and put them down. They are on the phone to rescue groups asap to come and get dogs.

Puppy Mills Owners, stores that sell them and the people like the Yorkie owners that don’t quite grasp the incredible responsibility they now have (time, training, patience, love, $, etc) make the homeless animal problem so much worse.

Don’t buy a dog. ADOPT. If you are interested in adopting a dog/cat always feel free to contact me at and I will be more than willing to help.

Rick Duro

43rd & 43rd

I’m looking at adopting a cat or two. Every rescue requires five-page forms to fill out, multiple personal references (you want to talk to my boss?!), talks with the landlord, home visits, and of course hundreds of dollars.

I think it’s great to keep pets out of the hands of known abusers, but wow, I can’t believe the adoption process is about to get even more complicated. I think it has to deter a lot of people.


Kudos for the new registry.

But I think its up to all of us to be cautious with placements and rehoming pets..

what about fake adopters? friends of friends adopting for these low lives.

Rescuerers need to be more cautious on who they adopt to.. homevisit, reference checks are a must.. we also use a system called NYSDocs free website to do a criminal search to see if the person was arrested..

Most abusers are connected to other crimes, drugs, weapons charges, and domestic violence.

Its a great first step, but would rather see stiffer penalties in NYS for animal abusers.. WHEN IS THAT GONNA HAPPEN?

Keeping tabs is not going to end abuse/cruelty & neglect.. STIFFER PENALTIES WILL!

Rick Duro

Anyone that abuses/mistreats an animal should lose the right to own one. Reuben, Sunnysider is right, tofu or no tofu.

This registry is one small step, actually enforcing it is another story altogether.

The NYC Animal Care and Control is a COMPLETE JOKE. What they do with their funding, besides using it to put animals down, is beyond me.

NYC ACC has pushed their responsibilities onto the NYPD and all the many local rescue groups. The latter does the REAL CARE and CONTROL in NYC, using their own $ and private donations, while NYCACC wastes $ and actually harms animals in their own care. (see the news story of a dog that was hanged by an animal control ‘worker).
NYPD is now in charge of responding to animals calls, as of Jamuary 1, they have received little, to no, training for this task. Where are the funds targeted to NYCACC going?

Mayor DiBlasio needs to completely overhaul the NYCACC.

Rick Duro


While it would be preferable to put these “people” on death row, the registry is a nice first step! I just hope it is implemented well and enforced.


the guy above me is a tree hugging hippie. enjoy your quinoa tofu cilantro pizza you hipster!


Can’t believe this wasn’t already a law. If u start off hurting an animal u usually end up abusing a human. Animal abusers deserve prison time

Lucky Lu

This is excellent news. The requirement to check the registry should fall on all people who are rehoming a pet. Too many animals given away on Craigslist end up in very bad hands.


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