☰ Revisor of Missouri


Chapter 578

< > Effective - 01 Jan 2017, 2 histories, see footnote    bottom

  578.018.  Warrant for entry on private property to inspect — impoundment of animals, disposition. — 1.  Any duly authorized public health official or law enforcement official may seek a warrant from the appropriate court to enable him or her to enter private property in order to inspect, care for, or impound neglected or abused animals.  All requests for such warrants shall be accompanied by an affidavit stating the probable cause to believe a violation of sections 578.005 to 578.023 has occurred.  A person acting under the authority of a warrant shall:

  (1)  Be given a disposition hearing before the court through which the warrant was issued, within thirty days of the filing of the request for the purpose of granting immediate disposition of the animals impounded;

  (2)  Place impounded animals in the care or custody of a veterinarian, the appropriate animal control authority, or an animal shelter.  If no appropriate veterinarian, animal control authority, or animal shelter is available, the animal shall not be impounded unless it is diseased or disabled beyond recovery for any useful purpose;

  (3)  Humanely kill any animal impounded if it is determined by a licensed veterinarian that the animal is diseased or disabled beyond recovery for any useful purpose;

  (4)  Not be liable for any necessary damage to property while acting under such warrant.

  2.  The owner or custodian or any person claiming an interest in any animal that has been impounded because of neglect or abuse may prevent disposition of the animal by posting bond or security in an amount sufficient to provide for the animal's care and keeping for at least thirty days, inclusive of the date on which the animal was taken into custody.  Notwithstanding the fact that bond may be posted pursuant to this subsection, the authority having custody of the animal may humanely dispose of the animal at the end of the time for which expenses are covered by the bond or security, unless there is a court order prohibiting such disposition.  Such order shall provide for a bond or other security in the amount necessary to protect the authority having custody of the animal from any cost of the care, keeping or disposal of the animal.  The authority taking custody of an animal shall give notice of the provisions of this section by posting a copy of this section at the place where the animal was taken into custody or by delivering it to a person residing on the property.

  3.  The owner or custodian of any animal humanely killed pursuant to this section shall not be entitled to recover any damages related to nor the actual value of the animal if the animal was found by a licensed veterinarian to be diseased or disabled, or if the owner or custodian failed to post bond or security for the care, keeping and disposition of the animal after being notified of impoundment.


(L. 1983 S.B. 211 § 7, A.L. 1993 S.B. 180, A.L. 2014 S.B. 491)

Effective 1-01-17

(2005) Section authorizing impoundment of abused or neglected animals is not unconstitutionally vague or a violation of equal protection.  State ex rel. Zobel v. Burrell, 167 S.W.3d 688 (Mo.banc).

---- end of effective  01 Jan 2017 ----

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578.018 1/1/2017
578.018 8/28/1993 1/1/2017

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