Legislative Watch

2012 was a difficult year for Animal Legislation

It has been a fast and furious fight for animal protections since last year in Washington State, and animal welfare bills that were presented in the 2011 session continued into the 2012 biennial session in Olympia. Over 20 animal-related bills moved through the session and PAWS focused on two that we felt were especially important for the animals in our community. See below for more details and PAWS’ position on these bills.

HB 1226 & SB 5151 Creating a spay/neuter assistance program

PAWS’ position:  Support

This bill would fund over 70,000 spay/neuter surgeries per year for cats and dogs of low-income residents and for feral and free-roaming cats in our state by establishing a minor fee on pet food to fund the program. This bill would not make spay/neuter mandatory, nor take money out of the limited general fund. Visit SaveWashingtonPets.org for more information on this bill.

Outcome:  Did not pass during the legislative session

Next steps: This bill will be reintroduced during the 2013 session. Stay in the loop about the new bill by signing up for the PAWS Actionline e-newsletter.

HB 1755 & SB 5649 Anti-tethering protection for dogs 

PAWS’ position:  Support

This bill would modify current law to include, "necessary food and water" to be clean, in adequate supply to sustain the animal, and easily accessible. Also, it would require guardians to maintain a shelter which keeps the animal clean, dry, and protected from the elements, and allows them to sit, stand, and move about without restriction. The bill would make sure dogs are not tethered for long periods of time and/or under unsafe circumstances. Violators would receive criminal penalties.

Outcome: Did not pass during the legislative session

Next steps: This bill will be reintroduced with some modifications during the 2013 session.

While we are disappointed that neither of these bills passed the legislative session this year, we still need you, the constituent, to let your legislators know that preserving animal protections matters to you. Sign up for PAWS' Actionline e-newsletter to receive important updates, including how you can be active for animals on the bills below. Every voice matters when it comes to animals!

You have the power to move legislation that impacts animals!

Learn more about advocating for animals

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