Zoosadism is a term used to refer to the pleasure that an individual gains from the cruelty to animals. The pleasure may be a kind of sexual pleasure. Zoosadism is getting sexually excited by causing harm to animals. It is different from zoophilia (sexual attraction of a human towards a non human animal.).
Zoosadism is considered as a form of animal abuse. In the U.S., depictions of animal cruelty are in violation of federal law. Pursuant to 18 USCS § 48(c), the term "depiction of animal cruelty" means any visual or auditory depiction, including any photograph, motion-picture film, video recording, electronic image, or sound recording of conduct in which a living animal is intentionally maimed, mutilated, tortured, wounded, or killed, if such conduct is illegal under Federal law or the law of the state in which the creation, sale, or possession takes place, regardless of whether the maiming, mutilation, torture, wounding, or killing took place in the state.
The relevant section reads as follows:
18 USCS § 48. Depiction of animal cruelty
(a) Creation, sale, or possession. Whoever knowingly creates, sells, or possesses a depiction of animal cruelty with the intention of placing that depiction in interstate or foreign commerce for commercial gain, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both.
(b) Exception. Subsection (a) does not apply to any depiction that has serious religious, political, scientific, educational, journalistic, historical, or artistic value.