Farry Bill to Protect Pets Left Unattended in Cars Passes House
7/7/2017
HARRISBURG – The House of Representatives today approved legislation, authored by Rep. Frank Farry (R-Bucks), to protect pets left unattended in hot cars.

The Motor Vehicle Extreme Heat Protection Act (House Bill 1216) would prohibit the confinement of a dog or cat in an unattended motor vehicle in a manner that would endanger the health and well-being of the animal. This violation would be a summary offense.

“The heat of summer can be dangerous for animals, especially those left inside hot cars. Every year, countless animals die after being left behind while their owners work, visit, shop or run other errands,” said Farry. “These deaths are tragic and entirely preventable.”

Under the bill, a police officer, humane officer or other public safety professional would have the authority to remove the dog or cat from the unattended motor vehicle if the officer believes the dog or cat is suffering and endangered after a reasonable search for the owner or operator of the vehicle. The officer who removes a cat or dog from an unattended vehicle would not be held liable for any damages.

“Too often we see pets left in hot cars as their owner runs an errand,” said Farry. “You may think you’re being quick, but it only takes a few minutes for the inside of the car to reach nearly 100 degrees on a hot day, even with the windows cracked. Animals left in these conditions face irreversible organ damage, heat stroke, brain damage, and, in extreme cases, death.”

The Humane Society of the United States, Fraternal Order of Police, the American Automobile Association (AAA), the Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association and emergency service organizations support the legislation and helped the lawmakers craft the language.

“The Motor Vehicle Extreme Heat Protection Act protects animals,” said Kristen Tullo, Pennsylvania state director, the Humane Society of the United States. “Pennsylvanians value their pets as family members, yet some mistakenly believe an animal can be comfortable or safe left unattended in a vehicle. This act will raise awareness of the dangers of leaving pets in parked cars and prevent needless suffering.”

 

Lawmakers and animal rights advocates teamed up for a recent press conference urging support for legislation to protect pets left unattended in a hot car. The Motor Vehicle Extreme Heat Protection Act passed the House of Representatives Friday. Pictured (from left) are Rep. Dom Costa (D-Allegheny); Mary Jane McNamee, JD, VMD, the Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association; Sen. Andy Dinniman (D-Chester); Rep. Frank Farry (R-Bucks), author of the Motor Vehicle Extreme Heat Protection Act; Kristen Tullo, Pennsylvania state director, the Humane Society of the United States; Megan Baylor, CVT, the Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association; and (back row) Adrian Tindell, roadside assistance manager, AAA Central Penn.

Representative Frank Farry
142nd District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Abbey Haslam
717.260.6222
ahaslam@pahousegop.com
RepFarry.com



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