Animal Law

The Animal Law focus area at GW Law provides an exceptionally broad range of educational and practical opportunities for law students while also providing pro bono services and support to the District of Columbia government, humane organizations, and community groups working to strengthen the protection of animals. GW Law offers instruction both in existing law (including the law affecting companion animals; animals used for food, research, and entertainment; and wild animals at the state, federal, and international levels) and in the promotion of animal protection and welfare through legal reform. The focus area also works to build bridges between local government and local and national humane organizations to support these entities in their efforts to change the perception of the relationship between human and non-human animals within our society and to improve the lives of animals.

The Animal Law focus area has several components, including an outstanding curriculum, annual conferences, a specialized field placement program that offers students opportunities to gain actual experience advocating on behalf of animals, an in-house program that allows students to affect change through legislative and regulatory avenues, scholarship opportunities to support students committed to the legal protection of animals, and a robust student chapter of the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

Past Events

8th Annual DC Week for the Animals Law Night

Panelists discussed two recent events that have important consequences for the animals in DC: The District's Department of the Environment Wildlife Action Plan and the Merger of the Washington Humane Society and the Washington Animal Rescue League.

Pet Study Break

Join the GW Student Animal Legal Defense Fund for a Pet Study Break to provide an opportunity for members of the law school community an opportunity to de-stress and enjoy the companionship of adorable (and often adoptable) animals.

National Justice for Animals Week 2016

Join the GW Student Animal Legal Defense Fund for a week of action for animals on February 21-27, 2016!

Workshop in International Wildlife Wellbeing: From Theory to Action

Experts in international animal and environmental law discussed ways to raise awareness of and promote better protection for individual wild animal well-being on the international stage.