Humane Laws in Summit County

Ohio Animal Welfare Laws allow the Humane Society of Summit County to rescue only abused, abandoned, or neglected animals. Please consult your local animal control agency regarding healthy stray animals and vicious animals. We are prohibited from handling wildlife.

HSSC Investigation Process

The animal must be confined to the owner's property - either chained, fenced, or in the residence for Humane Officers to investigate animal abuse, abandonment, or neglect. Physical abuse is an exception to confinement.

To file animal cruelty charges on physical abuse, our Humane Officers will need the assistance of the reporting party. Successful prosecution requires at least one witness to the abuse or a video. Humane Officers must also speak with the reporting party. Please do not email reports of animal abuse, abandonment, or neglect.

To investigate a report of animal abuse, abandonment, or neglect, our Humane Officers need the following information:

  • The name and phone number of the reporting party.
  • The address where the animal(s) is located.
  • What the problem is and when it was noticed.
  • If possible, the name of the owner of the animal(s) or of the person committing the act of cruelty.

In some cases, Humane Officers will work to educate the current owner on proper animal care and Ohio’s Animal Welfare Laws to improve the quality of life so the animal may remain in its home. If remediation is not successful, or if the animal requires immediate medical attention, our Humane Officers will often seize the animal, provide veterinary treatment, and file animal cruelty charges in one of the three municipal courts in Summit County.

Recent Changes to Humane Laws

Mandatory Reporters Now Obligated to Report Animal Abuse

How to Help Abused, Abandoned, or Neglected Animals

Call the cruelty hotline at (330) 405-0620. Our Humane Officers are on the road throughout the day so, please leave a message and wait for a return phone call. An officer will be paged once you have left a message. The Humane Officer must speak with the reporting party before assistance can be provided. Leave your name, call back number, type of animal, and nature of the problem.

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Humane Society of Summit County

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