Indiana's 2024 Legislative Session failed dogs and wildlife

Rankings come as the Humane Society Legislative Fund releases its Indiana Humane Scorecard

INDIANAPOLIS,  Ind. (May 14, 2024) – Today, the Humane Society Legislative Fund released its 2024 Indiana Humane Scorecard, which grades state legislators’ actions on threats to animal protection during the 2024 session, when legislation imperiling Indiana’s wildlife and companion animals was passed and later signed into law. The 2024 Indiana Humane Scorecard serves as a tool to commend those who stood firmly against these inhumane bills while also holding legislators who failed to protect animals accountable.

HSLF is a nonpartisan organization that evaluates candidates based only on a single criterion, where they stand on animal protection. HSLF does not judge candidates based on party affiliation or any other issue.

“Indiana’s most recent legislative session was devastating for animals, since many legislators pushed misinformation and lies to promote the interests of hunters, trappers and the puppy mill industry at the cost of animal suffering. Considering these massive challenges, we are beyond grateful to the elected officials in the statehouse who held firm to their values and heroically used their positions to fight for Indiana’s most vulnerable creatures,” said Samantha Chapman, the Indiana director of the Humane Society Legislative Fund. “The Indiana Humane Scorecard provides new transparency on the animal-welfare records of those serving in Indiana’s legislature. We urge Hoosiers to who love dogs and big cats to take notice of where their state legislators stand and to support humane champions this November.”

The following bills opposed by HSLF and scored on the 2024 Indiana Humane Scorecard have been signed into law:

  • Taking Bobcats (SB 241): Requires the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Natural Resources Commission to create a bobcat hunting/trapping season no later than July 1, 2025. The bobcat was only recently removed from the endangered species list after being listed on it for more than 50 years. Establishing a hunting and trapping season threatens the health of the bobcat population, integral to the state’s wildlife and ecosystem. A NO vote on SB 241 shows support to protect Indiana's only remaining native cat and opposition to inhumane hunting/trapping practices for an animal that was only recently removed from the endangered species list.
  • Canine Standards of Care (HB 1412): A pet store preemption bill that voided 21 humane pet store ordinances across the state. These humane pet store ordinances prohibited the sale of dogs in pet stores as most of those puppies come from high-volume breeding facilities. Puppies from puppy mills are often raised in unsanitary conditions with rampant overbreeding and a lack of comprehensive veterinary care. HB 1412 protects the puppy mill to pet store pipeline in Indiana by preempting municipalities from passing regulations on this issue. A NO vote on HB 1412 shows support for local control, Indiana animal shelters and rescues and local law enforcement officers who will be burdened with assisting with local pet store inspections.

HSLF only scores bills that receive roll-call votes to accurately reflect legislators’ actions.

As the nation’s leading political advocacy organization for animal protection, HSLF has published a Congressional Humane Scorecard since 2006 to track the relevant votes, co-sponsorships, and other actions of federal lawmakers. This resource effectively records which members of Congress are animal champions and which need more political pressure to denounce cruelty. Now, the organization is increasing its release of state-level scorecards, to build on the progress made in animal protection at the state level and hold members of the state legislature accountable to animal advocates.

Hoosier voters are encouraged to use this scorecard to make humane choices in 2024 at the ballot box and in future elections.

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Media Contact:
Emily Ehrhorn,