About Statutes

This page accesses the Code of Maryland (Statutes) and the Maryland Municipal Charters and Resolutions as compiled and maintained by the Department of Legislative Services.

The Code is arranged by and organized into “Articles” (e.g. Transportation Article), which are further subdivided into “titles”, “subtitles”, “sections”, “subsections”, “paragraphs”, subparagraphs”, etc.

Note that the “official” compilation of the laws (Chapters) enacted at each session of the General Assembly is published by the State as the “Laws of Maryland”, commonly referred to as the “Session Laws”. The Session Laws for each session are compiled chronologically by chapter number and serve as the source law from which the statutes accessed here are derived.

While the “Laws of Maryland” (Session Laws) constitute the official laws of the State, this Code and the annotated versions noted below are accepted as “evidence” of the law in all State courts and by all public offices and officials (See § 10-201 of the Courts & Judicial Proceedings Article). However, in the event of a conflict between the Code and the Session Laws, the Session Laws prevail.

Note: Annotated versions of the Code, published by LexisNexis and West, are available in book and online formats. These Annotated Codes include references to case law, related citations, and explanatory notations.

The Municipal Charters are updated each year by incorporating all charter resolutions received by the Department through May 31 of that year. Individual Municipal Resolutions are published to the General Assembly website as they are received by the Department.

Statute Text

Article - Business Regulation
(a)   In this subtitle the following words have the meanings indicated.
(b)   “Animal control unit” has the meaning stated in § 10–617 of the Criminal Law Article.
(c)   “Animal welfare organization” means a nonprofit organization established to promote animal welfare that has tax exempt status under § 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.
(d)   “Breeder” means a person who breeds or raises dogs to sell, exchange, or otherwise transfer to the public.
(e)   “Clinically ill” means an illness that is apparent to a licensed veterinarian based on observation, examination, or testing of the dog.
(f)    (1)   “Dealer” means a person who, for compensation:
(i)   buys, sells, or negotiates the purchase of a dog; or
(ii)   delivers for transport or transports a dog.
(2)   “Dealer” does not include a person who transports a dog as a carrier only.
(g)   “Nonelective surgical procedure” means a surgical procedure that is necessary to preserve or restore the health of an animal or to correct a condition that would:
(1)   interfere with the animal’s ability to walk, run, jump, or otherwise function in a normal manner; or
(2)   cause pain and suffering to the animal.
(h)   “Offer for sale” includes to sell, offer to transfer, offer for adoption, advertise for the sale, barter, auction, giveaway, or otherwise dispose of a domestic animal.
(i)   “Purchaser” means any person who purchases a dog from a retail pet store.
(j)   “Retail pet store” means a for–profit establishment open to the public that sells or offers for sale domestic animals to be kept as household pets.