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Slew Of Animal Protection Bills Pending

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File photo of rescued dogs. (Photo by Mandy Cheng/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of rescued dogs. (Photo by Mandy Cheng/AFP/Getty Images)

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico lawmakers this session are considering more than two dozen animal protection bills that propose everything from raising money for starving horses to increasing penalties for neglecting pets and continuing oversight of government-run shelters.

Animal rights advocates say the number of bills aimed at helping animals is higher than usual this year.

They say one reason is the increased awareness of the connection between cruelty to animals and abuse of people.

Elizabeth Jennings, executive director of Animal Protection New Mexico, says her agency is tracking some 30 bills this session, including proposals to make extreme cruelty like starving an animal or letting it freeze to death a fourth-degree felony.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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