TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — Fresh air and freedom for dogs in Florida vehicles will soon be taking a back seat to safety, if one state senator gets her way.
On Friday, Senate Minority Leader Lauren Book filed SB 932, which would prohibit drivers from allowing “a dog to extend its head or any other body part outside a motor vehicle window while the person is operating the motor vehicle on a public roadway.”
Sen. Book, a Democrat who represents parts of Broward county, authored and sponsored the “Animal Welfare” bill.
RESTRICTING DOG MOBILITY IN CARS
Pet owners also would not be allowed to let their dog or cat sit on their lap while driving a vehicle on a public road. The bill text states that dogs must be either in a crate, wearing a seat belt or under the control of another passenger in the car.
Violations of the new law would result in a “noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a moving violation.”
Additionally, under the Animal Welfare bill, pet owners would no longer be allowed to leave their animals chained up without supervision.
CAT DECLAWING AND SELLING BUNNIES FOR EASTER
Although dogs may bark at their loss of freedom, felines would enjoy new protections. Book’s bill would outlaw veterinarians from declawing cats, by instituting $5,000 fines for each violation and the possibility of revoking the vet’s license.
The proposed legislation also seeks to ban rabbit sales during the months of March and April, in anticipation of Easter. Rabbit sales would also be prohibited year-round in any “open-air venues” like flea markets, parades, concerts, festivals, parking lots and on the side of the road.
Sen. Book’s office declined to provide immediate comment.