Allow People to Rescue Distressed and Dying Animals

Dog Trapped in Hot Car

Target: Bill Galvano, Florida State Senate Majority Leader

Goal: Make it legal for people to help a distressed animal out of a hot car.

Dogs left unattended in cars may soon be legally rescued by concerned citizens. Activists need to support this potential law in order to better ensure that animals in danger will be saved.

The bill known as the “Protecting Animal Welfare and Safety Act” would not only allow officials such as animal control officers and firefighters to rescue an animal from an “unattended vehicle,” it would also allow regular citizens to use “reasonable force” to rescue the animal if the owner is unable to be located. The person would only have to get permission from either someone in law enforcement, a 911 operator or a fire department official.

Under this new law, a person would not be “criminally or civilly” liable for breaking into a car to retrieve the animal if the animal is clearly suffering and is at risk of dying. He would only have to leave a note disclosing the name of the shelter or safe haven where the animal is being taken so authorities would better be able to determine if the animal should remain in the owner’s care.

Thousands of dogs die every year because they are left unattended by their owners in cars. In fact, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association, the temperature can rise approximately 20 degrees inside a car, quickly turning a 70-degree day into a 90-degree day for a dog. This is the case even when the windows are cracked.

Sign this petition and urge lawmakers to make this proposed bill a law. Many more animals may be saved as a result.


Dear Senator Galvano,

As you may know, a proposed bill known as the “Protecting Animal Welfare and Safety Act” may soon make it legal for officials and other good citizens to rescue distressed animals in hot cars. Making it so someone is able to quickly get permission to rescue a distressed animal without being “criminally or civilly” liable is a great idea, because a potential rescuer will likely take action rather than wonder if he will be legally penalized for helping the animal.

Thousands of animals die every year as a result of being left in cars. Because of how high temperatures can reach within a confined space, dogs are still in danger when the windows are cracked. These facts alone make such a law necessary. For all of these reasons, I urge you to stand behind this issue and to support officially making the “Protecting Animal Welfare and Safety Act” law. Doing so will likely save many animals from heartless abuse.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Karl and Ali

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  1. Its a catch 22 situation! But wwhat other chance does a dog in distress have? If u can prove the dog was in distress, then I’m all for it! But, the owner of the dog should be penelized!!!

  2. Viviane Lavallee says:

    This is very miserable you can save a children but not a dog????? For me all lives are precious !!!!!!

  3. Natasha polychuk Natasha polychuk says:

    i would break any car window!!! It should be legal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. This is a no-brainer! Of course you should do everything in your power to save a life, animal and human alike.

  5. Tony DeLia Tony DeLia says:

    Mandatory punishment for anyone who leaves their dog in a hot car.

    And I am not going to let an animal suffer in a hot car whether or not breaking in to rescue the animal is legal in some ethically compromised legislator’s view.

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