Measure 5 Has Mixed Reviews | VideoSarahbeth Ackerman | 10/8/2012
Measure 5 deals with making it a Class C Felony for anyone who intentionally harms a living dog, cat or horse. If found guilty, that person could face up to five years in jail.
"I don`t believe it`s okay to do any of those things to any animal. So I believe that you are intentionally going to hurt an animal to that extreme you should receive a felony for that," said Souris Valley Animal Shelter Manager Kristine Seabolt.
As of now, there are 48 states that punish some forms of animal abuse as a felony offense. This leaves North Dakota and South Dakota the last two states without felony punishment.
"There`s no reason why it should be a misdemeanor and a hand slap for you to suffocate or impale a dog," says Seabolt.
If Measure 5 passes, it will protest domestic animals such as dogs, cats and horses. However, the livestock industry may have some concerns.
"There`s a fear here probably. A fear of what we`re opening up and what`s the intention and what is going and what it`s addressing. Are we preventing or is there some other thing thats assigning felony fines and what that might lead to," said NDSU Area Livestock Specialist John Dhuyvetter.
Although livestock is not on the list of animals protected, some feel it should be added.
"I don`t think it would hurt to have it on the books for livestock and I believe that there are certainly different things that can be done to protect those animals as well," said Seabolt.
Voters will decide on Measure 5 in November.