Finn’s Law (Sentences for Cruelty Against Service Animals)

Animal welfare is a matter which is devolved to the Scottish Parliament. The SNP value the vital work that police and other service animals do every day to keep our communities safe.  The Scottish Government are committed to protecting animals and will continue to legislate to improve the welfare of animals.


Penalties for animal cruelty in Scotland are set out in the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 in the section on offences and penalties. Anyone found guilty of an offence under the Act can be subject to a £20,000 fine or 12 months imprisonment or both. Anyone found guilty of an offence against a service animal could therefore receive a sentence within that framework. The Scottish Government has also recently confirmed that a number of new measures to improve and protect animal welfare legislation will be introduced in Scotland, including a full review of penalties under the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.