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Have you witnessed or suspect animal neglect, cruelty or abuse? Report it.

This is a legal matter. No action can be taken by authorities until a complaint is filed. Please follow the law. Contact the agencies below.

ALSO: At this time in Minnesota, there is not "one" hotline number to call to report all concerns below. That makes it more time-consuming for people to file complaints, but please take the time. If authorities aren't aware of the problem, they can't act. Make as many people and agencies aware of the problem as possible.





If an animal’s life is in immediate danger, call 911.

Sheriff and Police
If you have seen or suspect animal neglect, cruelty or abuse, local law enforcement is the key contact. File a complaint with your local sheriff (county) or local police (city). Also contact the Animal Humane Society, who works with sheriff offices and police departments, and your local animal control or humane society.

Contact your local police department or sheriff office

Contact the Animal Humane Society

Contact local Animal Care and Control department



If you've been sold a sick animal from a breeder, pet store, website or other facility or have been misled by false advertising, file a complaint with the Minnesota Attorney General and with various consumer protection groups. Most have online complaint forms on their websites.

Contact the Minnesota Attorney General

Contact consumer protection groups



If you know or suspect a person, breeder or business is conducting medical procedures on animals without a veterinary license or the veterinarian is acting improperly, report it to the Minnesota Board of Veterinary Medicine. The Board has an online complaint form and can take disciplinary action.

Contact the Minnesota Board of Veterinary Medicine



If you suspect a breeder or business involved in animal production is polluting the land, water or air through improper disposal of feces, urine and carcasses (or causing noise pollution due to excessive barking), report it to the Environmental Services Department in your county. If it's a large kennel (over 1,000 dogs), also report it to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

• Environmental Services Dept. (contact your county)

Contact the MN Pollution Control Agency



If someone or business is selling and shipping dogs or cats across state lines without an inspection certificate, report it to the Minnesota Board of Animal Health (BAH) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). An inspection (by the veterinarian) of each animal to be transported is required by law, so as to minimize the spread of contagious diseases between states.

Contact Board of Animal Health: MN State Veterinarian

Contact the USDA-APHIS regional office



If you did not pay sales tax when purchasing your dog or cat or if you suspect the breeder/facility is not collecting and remitting sales tax, report it to the Minnesota Department of Revenue. Animal Folks MN conducted a study showing that 74% of sampled breeders, as of 2009, were not paying sales tax. Learn more at: Tax Revenues

Contact the Minnesota Department of Revenue



If you have purchased an animal that is diseased (i.e., has an infectious, contagious or communicable disease) or have evidence that an animal facility (i.e. breeder, dealer, pet store, farming operation) has diseased animals, report it to the MN Board of Animal Health.

Contact MN Board of Animal Health



NOTE: In Minnesota, there is no state regulation of dog and cat breeders. This means there is no State agency designated to receive calls for animal neglect/cruelty. As noted above, consumer fraud, environmental concerns and other issues related to inhumane breeding practices are scattered across various departments. There is also no State fund for training and hiring of agents who would conduct inspections, enforce standards, train local police and coordinate efforts, and work with local or State prosecutors.



Be specific. Due to limited staffing and resources, agencies prioritize each call. Proper evidence is needed to successfully build a case for seizure and/or prosecution.

To help, please be prepared with the following:

1. Name of breeder or facility (if pet owner cruelty, name of pet owner)
2. Location (address, city)
3. Date complaint occurred/witnessed
4. A brief and specific account of the facts and circumstances involved, including animal(s) present/involved, description of conditions or incident, advertisements
5. Your name and a daytime phone number, in case follow-up information is needed. All information is kept confidential.

Whether or not you must give your name varies based on the department/agency. Identifying yourself allows authorities to follow-up if he or she has questions.

TIP: Be sure to follow up 2-3 days after the initial call to check status of the complaint.



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