New Hampshire Considering Law that Would Make it Illegal to Kill a Cat In a Hit-and-Run

Kelli Bender
·2 min read

Known for having extra lives, cats could be getting even more protection.

According to the Associated Press, New Hampshire's legislature is currently considering a bill that, if enacted, would make it illegal to kill or injure a cat in a hit-and-run and not report the incident.

Close to 40 years ago, New Hampshire passed a law that requires drivers to report any hit-and-run accidents involving a dog to the police or the pet's owners. If a driver fails to report an injured or dead dog after a hit-and-run, they could be fined $1,000.

New Hampshire lawmakers are now working to extend the same protections to cats. Republican Rep. Daryl Abbas sponsored the bill after his family's feline, a partially blind cat named Arrow, was hit by a car and left to die.

"I remember telling my wife, 'It's an accident, we have to forgive the person,' but I was more upset that the person didn't stop," he told AP. "Who doesn't stop?"

After Abbas reported Arrow's death to the police and learned there were no reporting requirements for hit-and-runs involving cats, even though there are requirements for hit-and-runs involving personal property, he drafted a bill that would offer felines some protections.

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"The only glaring exception is if the damage is to a person's cat. Literally under the law, if you were to hit a statue of a fake cat with your car, you would have to report that, but not the real cat," he added. "The real cat and the fake cat should at least have equal property protection."

New Hampshire's House of Representatives passed the bill, co-sponsored by cat-owning Democrat Rep. Anita Burroughs, without debate, and the Senate is expected to do the same, per AP.

If the bill is enacted into law, New Hampshire will join New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island in protecting cats that are involved in hit-and-run accidents.