Nevada About To Join 23 Other States In Passing Law Against Leaving Animal In Hot Car

Cars are dangerous. Think about it - vehicles that weigh several thousand pounds hurtling around on roads often at speeds exceeding 50 mph, and thousands upon thousands of them out on the road at the same time - it’s an obvious recipe for disaster.

In fact, it turns out cars are dangerous even when they are parked on the side of the road. Related to this, there is no excuse for pet owners to be ignorant of the dangers relating to leaving an animal in a hot car.

Moreover, a new law has just passed in Nevada that will help keep pets safe. It seems that Nevada State Senate bill 409 passed during the last legislative session.

Sources say this bill will criminalize the act of leaving an animal locked car during warm weather. A person convicted of this crime would face up to six months in jail and/or a one thousand dollar fine.

Leaving either a pet or a child in a locked car is stupid and inexcusable. There have been so many well-publicized incidents relating to both young children and pets that no one can claim ignorance of the hazards of doing so.

When Senate Bill 409 passes the house it will be sent to the governor’s office to be signed into law. As of 2018, only twenty-three states have passed laws to protect animals left in locked cars.

The states that have passed these laws include Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

In most of these states, the crime is classified as a class “A” misdemeanor that may carry penalties including fines and/or incarceration. The laws also indemnify first responders or civilian rescuers who must damage vehicles to extricate trapped animals from dangerous situations.

Some of these state laws specify cats and dogs for legal protection, others simply list domestic animals, and some laws actually say any vertebrate besides humans or livestock are the protected legal class.

Keep in mind that these animal protection laws have been drafted and passed in both blue and red states, meaning that politics is not an issue here and making clear the almost universal acceptance of the idea that animals should be protected under the laws of basic decency just as much as humans.

Granted that the passage of this new law is a big deal for the people and animals of the state of Nevada, there are plenty of other animal rights issues that need to be considered by state legislatures today, including the legality of so-called “puppy mills,” caring for stray animals and the use of kill shelters, and veterinary malpractice laws.

For all of those who are interested in learning more about the legal rights of animals, additional useful resources to be researched include Michigan State University’s Animal Legal Center, The Animal Legal Defense Fund, The American Kennel Club, The Humane Society of The United States, and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).

Source: AWM
Photo: KSNV, YouTube

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