smoking pets

In Illinois, there was a law that made it illegal to give a lighted cigar to a pet.

When Enacted: Established in the late 19th or early 20th century.

How and When Enforced: A symbolic law, aimed at discouraging behavior deemed inappropriate or harmful to animals, rather than a statute that was rigorously policed.

Why Enacted and Why It Made Sense at the Time: The law was likely enacted as an early form of animal welfare legislation. At a time when animal rights were not as widely recognized or protected as they are today, such a law would have been a step towards acknowledging and preventing cruelty to animals. Giving a lighted cigar to a pet could be harmful to the animal, potentially causing burns, respiratory problems, or other health issues.

Additionally, the law might have been aimed at preventing public acts of animal mistreatment that were considered distasteful or offensive. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, there was growing public sentiment against cruelty to animals, leading to the formation of various animal welfare groups and the enactment of laws to protect animals.

While the specific act of giving a lighted cigar to a pet seems unusual today, the law reflects broader historical movements towards recognizing and safeguarding animal welfare. It’s an early example of the kind of legal protections for animals that have become much more common and comprehensive in modern times.



hand fishing

In Indiana, it was illegal to catch a fish with your bare hands.

When Enacted: It could have been established in the early to mid-20th century, a period when many states were developing more detailed regulations on hunting and fishing practices.

How and When Enforced: The enforcement of this law would have been under the jurisdiction of wildlife and fishery departments. It’s likely that the law was part of broader fishing regulations, aimed at preserving fish populations and ensuring ethical fishing practices.

Why Enacted and Why It Made Sense at the Time: The law was likely enacted to regulate fishing practices and to protect fish populations. Catching fish with bare hands, also known as “noodling,” can be harmful to fish breeding, especially if it disturbs nesting areas. It’s a practice that can also be dangerous for the person involved, leading to potential injuries from the fish or from the underwater environment.

The prohibition might have also been a way to ensure fair sporting practices in fishing. Traditional fishing methods using rods and reels, nets, or traps are regulated in terms of size, location, and seasons to ensure sustainable fishing practices. Noodling, being more difficult to regulate, might have been banned as a way to maintain these standards.

In the context of the time, such a law would have been a part of broader conservation efforts, reflecting a growing awareness of the need to protect natural resources and to promote ethical wildlife practices. While it might seem peculiar today, this law highlights the ongoing evolution of wildlife management and conservation regulations.

Don Leith

By Don Leith

Retired from the real world. A love of research left over from my days on the debate team in college long ago led me to work on this website. Granted, not all these stories are "fun" or even "trivial" But they all are either weird, unusual or even extraordinary. Working on this website is "fun" in any case. Hope you enjoy it!