The information contained within this blog is for information purposes only and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of FAAOW.

  • 2 Jun 2017 9:54 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Florida Legislative Session 2017

    HB 515 (Watson) / SB 1162 (Rader) Companion Animal Protection Act             

    Directs animal shelters to take certain measures relating to the holding, treatment, & euthanasia of animals; provides exceptions; provides for declaratory or injunctive relief actions.

    Status: No hearing, died in committee.

    HB 17 (Fine) & SB 1158 (Passidomo) (Not Companion Bills) Local Regulation Preemption         

    Local Regulation Preemption; Prohibits certain local governments from imposing or adopting certain regulations on businesses, professions, & occupations after certain date; preempts to state regulations concerning businesses, professions, & occupations; provides exceptions to preemption.

    Status: Passed 1 House committee; died.

    HB 743 (Smith) / SB 515 (Young) Steroids in Greyhound Racing                             

    Provides that positive test result for anabolic steroids in greyhound results in violation.

    Status: Passed House, passed 2 Senate Committees, died in Senate.

    HB 7037 (La Rosa) / SB 8 (Galvano) Gaming                                                                                       

    SB 8 included a measure to decouple greyhound racing from other forms of gaming and require injury reporting by greyhound tracks. HB 7037, however, prohibited decoupling for 20 years.

    Status: Passed Senate/House, withdrawn from Conference Committee on Gaming; died.

    HB 871 (Ingoglia) / SB 1628 (Young) Animal Abuser Registry                                                      

    Requires FDLE to post publicly accessible list on its website of persons convicted of specified animal abuse offenses; requires each clerk of court to forward notice of animal abuse conviction to FDLE within specified time; provides requirements for list; specifies period for listing; provides for removal of listing if conviction is expunged or sealed; requires FDLE to send annual notice to specified entities; authorizes probation conditions to prohibition certain persons from having certain responsibilities for or association with animals.

    Status: Passed 1 House committee; died.

    HB 1375 (J. Grant) / SB 1374 (Perry) Specialty License Plates                                                      

    Revises presale specialty license plate voucher requirements; prohibits development of new plates except under certain circumstances; provides requirements for issuance of such plates; [. . . .] revises design of, deletes provisions relating to, revises distribution of proceeds from sale of, & directs DHSMV to create certain plates.

    Status: Passed House, died.

    HB 627 (Moskowitz) / SB 320 (Steube) Dogs in Vehicles                                                               

    Requires person transporting a dog in certain areas of certain vehicles or trailers to secure dog; provides penalty; provides exceptions; preempts regulation of transportation of dogs in vehicles to state; declares void certain ordinances/rules adopted by local governments; requires court to declare such ordinances/rules invalid & issue permanent injunction.

    Status: No hearing, died in committee.

    SB 212 Animal Hoarding  (Steube)                                                                                                                          

    Prohibiting animal hoarding; providing penalties and remedies for animal hoarding, etc.

    Status: Died, no House companion.

    HB 151 (Brodeur and Moskowitz) / SB 416 (Montford) Dogs in Court

    Provides that judges may allow use of certain therapy animals or facility dogs in proceedings involving abuse, abandonment, or neglect; allows such animals to be used when taking testimony of certain other persons.

    Status:  Passed. Signed by officers and presented to the Governor (5/4).

    HB 979 (Hardemon) / SB 1466 (Campbell) Pet Dealers

    Requires pet dealers to only sell or offer for sale dogs procured from humane society, animal shelter, or person or entity who has not been adjudicated and issued certain citations for violating federal Animal Welfare Act; prohibits unlicensed commercial dog breeder from selling dog to pet dealer; requires pet dealer to retain certain records for specified period after sale; provides penalties.

    Status: No hearing, died in committee.

  • 6 Dec 2016 9:03 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Help the Psychology Department at the University of South Florida – Sarasota-Manatee with some research! Click the link below to take their survey.

    Download File

  • 22 Feb 2016 9:05 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    SARASOTA, FL — The U.S. Humane Society has released its annual scorecard showing which Congressional leaders stand out on animal rights issues and which ones fall short of the mark.

    Using a 100-point scale, with room for extra credit, the nonprofit organization ranked Senators and Representatives based on issues that arose during 2015. The Senate scorecard, for example, includes points for those who voted against delisting lesser prairie chickens from the Endangered Species Act, those who signed a funding letter and Senators who took leadership roles by sponsoring pro-animal legislation. The House scorecard provided points for those who cosponsored bills to protect animals, among other factors.
    U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Florida, was the only Republican in the House or Senate to earn a score of 100-plus. Buchanan has been outspoken on a number of animal-related issues. Earlier this year, for example, he penned a letter urging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to reconsider its position on weakening protection for Florida’s manatee population under the Endangered Species Act. He’s also called on the Obama Administration to designate critical habitat for the endangered Florida panther.
    While Buchanan’s score sets him apart from other Republican, he says “stopping animal cruelty and safeguarding threatened wildlife should be a bipartisan issue important to us all.”
    “Congressman Buchanan has been a leading advocate for animal protection in Congress, preventing animal cruelty and protecting endangered species,” Michael Markarian, president of the Humane Society Legislative Fund, said in a statement.

    Here’s a look at how other Florida representatives scored:
    • Bill Nelson, Democrat – 43
    • Marco Rubio, Republican – 0
    • Gus Bilirakis, Republican – 22
    • Corrine Brown, Democrat – 44
    • Kathy Castor, Democrat – 78
    • Curt Clawson, Republican – 0
    • Ander Crenshaw, Republican – 33
    • Carlos Curbelo, Republican – 78
    • Ron DeSantis, Republican – 11
    • Ted Deutch, Democrat – 100
    • Mario Diaz-Balart, Republican – 33
    • Lois Frankel, Democrat – 100
    • Gwen Graham, Democrat – 44
    • Alan Grayson, Democrat – 100
    • Alcee Hastings, Democrat – 100+
    • David Jolly, Republican – 56
    • John Mica, Republican – 33
    • Jeff Miller, Republican – 0
    • Patrick Murphy, Democrat – 100
    • Richard Nugent, Republican – 22
    • Bill Posey, Republican – 22
    • Tom Rooney, Republican – 22
    • Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Republican – 78
    • Dennis Ross, Republican – 44
    • Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Democrat – 100
    • Daniel Webster, Republican – 0
    • Frederica Wilson, Democrat – 100
    • Ted Yoho, Republican – 33
    To see the full Humane Scorecard, visit the U.S. Humane Society online.
    Photo courtesy of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  • 11 Dec 2015 9:06 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    SB 920 - Cruelty to Animals
    General Bill by Sachs
    Cruelty to Animals: Establishing that property used or attempted to be used as an instrumentality in the commission of felony cruelty to animals is subject to forfeiture; revising the definition of the term “contraband article”, etc.
    Effective Date: 07/01/2016
    Last Event: 11/19/15 S Filed on Thursday, November 19, 2015 2:27 PM

    SB 732 - Greyhound Racing
    General Bill by Smith
    Greyhound Racing: Creating the "Greyhound Safety Act"; prohibiting the Division of Pari-mutuel Wagering of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation from granting a license or permit to an applicant convicted of animal cruelty, felony aggravated assault or battery, or felony child abuse; requiring the division to immediately revoke a license or permit of a person convicted of animal cruelty; providing that the division may not commence administrative proceedings and must reinstate a suspended license if the division cannot confirm a positive test result; providing certain requirements for maintaining safe racing facilities and racetrack surfaces, etc.
    Effective Date: 07/01/2016
    Last Event: 11/18/15 S Referred to Regulated Industries; Criminal Justice; Appropriations on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 2:22 PM

    SB 412 - Greyhound Racing Injuries
    General Bill by Sobel
    Greyhound Racing Injuries: Citing this act as the "Victoria Q. Gaetz Racing Greyhound Protection Act"; requiring injuries to racing greyhounds to be reported on a form adopted by the Division of Pari-mutuel Wagering in the Department of Business and Professional Regulation within a certain timeframe; specifying the information that must be included in the form, etc.
    Effective Date: 07/01/2016
    Last Event: 10/09/15 S Referred to Regulated Industries; Fiscal Policy on Friday, October 09, 2015 10:50 AM

    CS/CS/SB 308 - Unattended Persons and Animals in Motor Vehicles
    General Bill by Judiciary and Criminal Justice and Benacquisto
    Unattended Persons and Animals in Motor Vehicles: Providing definitions; providing immunity from civil liability for entry into a motor vehicle to remove a person or animal under certain circumstances; providing for applicability, etc.
    Effective Date: Upon becoming a law
    Last Event: 12/03/15 S Pending reference review under Rule 4.7(2) - (Committee Substitute) on Thursday, December 03, 2015 10:40 AM

    SB 200 - Animals Confined in Unattended Motor Vehicles
    General Bill by Hukill
    Last Event: Tuesday, September 15, 2015 - 09/15/15 S Referred to Criminal Justice; Judiciary; Rules

    SB 334 - Severe Injuries Caused by Dogs
    General Bill by Montford
    Severe Injuries Caused by Dogs: Specifying circumstances under which a dog that has caused severe injury to a human may be returned to its owner rather than be destroyed, etc.
    Effective Date: 07/01/2016
    Last Event: 12/01/15 S CS by Judiciary; YEAS 8 NAYS 0 on Tuesday, December 01, 2015 5:44 PM

    CS/SB 440 - Care for Retired Law Enforcement Dogs
    General Bill by Criminal Justice, Abruzzo
    Last Event: Thursday, November 19, 2015 - 11/19/15 S Now in Appropriations Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice

    SB 680 - Companion Animals
    General Bill by Ring
    Companion Animals: Authorizing the award of damages to an owner for loss of companionship in an action against a veterinarian for the death of his or her companion animal which resulted from the veterinarian’s negligence or recklessness, etc.
    Effective Date: 07/01/2016
    Last Event: 11/18/15 S Referred to Regulated Industries; Judiciary; Rules on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 2:22 PM

    HB 71 - Companion Animals
    General Bill by Watson, B. and Smith (CO-SPONSORS) Berman; Gaetz
    Companion Animals: Directs animal shelters to take certain measures relating to the holding, treatment, & euthanasia of animals; provides exceptions; provides for declaratory or injunctive relief actions.
    Effective Date: July 1, 2016
    Last Event: Now in Agriculture & Natural Resources Subcommittee on Thursday, September 10, 2015 9:59 AM

  • 13 Nov 2015 9:12 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Click here to call your U.S. senator and ask him or her to support and cosponsor the SAFE Act.

    S. 1214—The Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act of 2015

    Sponsors:  Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Susan Collins (R-ME)
    ASPCA Position:  Support
    Action Needed:  Please call your U.S. senator right now and ask him or her to support and cosponsor the SAFE Act.

    From the ASPCA:

    Horse slaughter is a cruel, unnecessary, predatory industry. While there is no domestic market for horse meat, approximately 150,000 American horses each year are trucked to slaughtering facilities in Mexico and Canada to be killed and butchered for human consumption.

    The Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act (S.1214) would end this cruel practice by prohibiting the slaughter of horses for human consumption in the U.S. and banning their export abroad for that purpose.
    Every horse is just one bad sale away from slaughter. Until a federal ban is in place, no horse is safe.
  • 26 Oct 2015 9:13 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
      From the Miami Herald
    October 23, 2015

    Stymied for years by broken promises and the tangled politics of gaming in Florida, a coalition of animal advocates announced Friday that it is forming a political committee to pass ballot initiatives that reform and phase out greyhound racing in the state.

  • 16 Jun 2015 9:30 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Each year the United States House of Representatives takes up the Agriculture Appropriations Bill – the annual spending bill for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA is the branch of the Federal Government that handles animal related issues. We are building support for an amendment to that appropriations bill to renew a prohibition on funding for USDA inspections of horse slaughter plants. This “Defund Amendment,” in effect, keeps horse slaughter plants from opening in this country until we can pass the SAFE Act. DOWNLOAD HORSE SLAUGHTER DEFUND FACT SHEET


    From the ASPCA

    How You Can Help
    Send a letter to Congressman Jolly using this link: One of the most important factors in decision-making for legislators is knowing that stake holders in their districts feel a certain way about an issue. Additionally, placing a call to his Washington, DC office at (202) 225-5961 just letting the staff know that you urge Congressman Jolly to vote YES on the Defund Amendment when it is offered in the Appropriations Committee. If you have a Facebook page, please also urge your friends to make a call, too!

    Information on Horse Slaughter
    There are many myths widely believed about horse slaughter: that it would stimulate the economy, if slaughterhouses were reopened in the U.S. better conditions could be regulated, and that slaughterhouses are necessary to the management of equine overpopulation. These facilities pollute local water, decrease property values, and damage the environment. It is revealing that states such as Texas and Illinois, where slaughterhouses once existed, now have implemented laws specifically banning selling, giving and possessing horse meat intended for human consumption. Furthermore, there is no way to create better slaughtering conditions for these animals. Due to their unique build and strong “flight” reflex, horses are much more difficult to render unconscious than, for example, a cow. That means the majority of horses proceeding to dismemberment are still conscious and forced to experience a slow and excruciating death. In addition, these horses are forced to experience hours of cramped transportation for days at a time without water or proper care before reaching the slaughterhouse. Contrary to the myth that slaughterhouses are necessary to manage equine overpopulation, responsible breeding and ownership practices can provide a complete solution for the U.S. horses going to slaughter each year. DOWNLOAD MYTHS AND FACTS ABOUT HORSE SLAUGHTER

    We’re expecting this vote to come up very soon- potentially by next Wednesday (June 24, 2015). Getting a letter into his office could be very influential on how he votes. We are not sure if he will vote to sustain the prohibition on USDA funding of horse slaughter plant inspections again this year, and we are looking for all of the help that we can churn up before he makes his decision.
  • 1 Jun 2015 9:31 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    May 22, 2015: This morning, Walmart, one of the world’s biggest companies – and the nation’s biggest food seller by a long shot – announced it has adopted the “five freedoms” principles for farm animals, effectively renouncing the use of extreme confinement and other abusive practices in animal agriculture, and signaling an extraordinary change in agriculture in America. Precisely because it’s Walmart, this is the most definitive statement yet that the era of confining farm animals in cages will come to an end. We applaud the company for adopting a comprehensive animal welfare policy, which comes on the heels of dozens of other declarations and pledges from other major food retailers against gestation crates, battery cages, and tail docking of dairy cows.


    From the Humane Society of The United States Blog:

    Walmart is calling on its suppliers to, among other actions, work toward ensuring that animals: 1) are raised in ways that allow them to engage in natural behaviors, including having sufficient space and socialization with other members of their species, 2) be provided more comfortable living conditions, 3) are free from painful mutilations 4) be spared mental discomfort or distress, and 5) be given ready access to water and feed. These changes, so grounded in common sense, would nonetheless herald major improvements over how much of agribusiness currently treats animals.
  • 28 May 2015 9:32 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
     Please ask Senators Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio to support section 594 of the military appropriations bill which would give priority to members of the U.S. Military who want to adopt their military animals. Using the link below, you can easily fill in your information and generate a letter of support!

  • 11 May 2015 9:33 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Below is an update on the legislation FAAWO lobbied during the 2015 session:

    • Humane Disposal of Livestock (SB 420/HB 627) - According to HSUS, the House adopted the wording of SB 420 and this legislation is awaiting the Governor's signature
    • Pets' Trust Act (HB 207/SB 670) - DIED
    • Companion Animal Protection Act (HB 497/SB 1234) - DIED
    • Illegal Ivory Articles and Rhino Horns (SB 1120) - DIED and had no companion bill. This bill may be re-worked and re-introduced by Senator Altman in 2016.
    • Greyhound Injury Reporting (SB 2/HB 129) - SB 2 passed in the Senate but advocates were asked to focus on HB 1233, a gaming bill that included provisions for both mandatory greyhound injury reporting and decoupling. This bill may be addressed during the Special Session this summer.

Florida Association of Animal Welfare Organizations


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