I have recently received a number of emails in the form below urging supporting of key animal protection bills. I feel strongly about animal protection issues and I am already a cosponsor of all these bills!
I am writing to ask that you co-sponsor these key animal protection bills this session:
Farm Animal Confinement (Senate Docket 1690): This bill would prohibit the confinement of calves raised for veal and pregnant pigs in cages so small they cannot turn around.
Illegal Hunting (House Docket 3036 & 3033, Senate Docket 1226):
This bill will increase poaching penalties, some of which have not been updated since the 1930s, and allow Massachusetts to join the Interstate Wildlife Violator Compact. Massachusetts is one of only 7 states not a member of the the compact.
Puppy Bill (Senate Docket 1095, House Docket 1738): This bill will protect puppies, kittens and consumers from irresponsible breeders.
I am a constituent who cares deeply about animal protection. This session I hope that you will help us protect farm animals from extreme confinement, wildlife from poaching and puppies from puppy mills.
Additionally, I am a cosponsor of all the bills mentioned positively in the email below (and not of the one mentioned negatively).
Please consider the following animal bills as you review your many cosponsor requests.
Reducing Animal Suffering – HD 279
This bill would clarify the existing animal cruelty laws and give specific express notice to animal owners and possessors that they have an obligation to provide their animals with veterinary care that is necessary to prevent or relieve their animals’ suffering. Over 20 states have some provision in their statutes creating such a duty.
Sponsor: Rep. Kafka
Animal Abandonment in Vacant Properties – SD 618 This bill will require that landlords and foreclosing owners inspect recently vacated and foreclosed units within 5 days for the presence of abandoned animals and notify an animal control officer, police or other authorized agent, if an abandoned animal is found. It will also deem an animal abandoned if it is found in a vacated property through foreclosure, eviction, termination of tenancy or abandonment. Sponsor:
Reporting the Management of Problem Wildlife – HD 759 This bill would require that people who are granted permits to remedy wildlife conflicts report the outcome to MassWildlife so they can track the numbers of animals taken by trappers, statewide populations, complaints about species, locations of complaints, and the methods chosen to remedy them. Sponsor: Rep. Gobi
Updating the law Relating to the care of Seized Animals – HD 1124 This bill would make a few, mostly technical, changes in this statute that passed in 2002 that allows an authority that seizes an animal pursuant to applicable animal cruelty or fighting statutes to request the court to order a bond to cover the costs of caring for the animal during the period of time the animal is held until the case is adjudicated. The bill would now allow the district attorney to file the petition for the bond. It would, in many cases, be more efficient to allow the bond issue to be addressed as part of the prosecution.
Sponsor: Rep. Campbell.
Pets in Disasters – SD 1101
This bill will ensure that people who care for household pets and service animals will be incorporated into local disaster plans. This will not only protect animals, but serves and important public safety
purpose: to reduce “failure to evacuate” during disasters due to concern for the animal. Sponsor: Senator Spilka
Dog law enforcement – SD 1488
Last year, a bill passed that would prohibit certain inhumane practices for the care of dogs. Currently, the statute is only enforceable by animal control officers, but this bill would allow special police officers employed by the MSPCA and Animal Rescue League of Boston to also enforce this statute. Sponsor: Senator Jehlen
Farm Animal Cruelty – HD 691
Most farm animals are raised in intense confinement systems that thwart most, if not all, of their natural behaviors. This bill would prohibit the confinement of farm animals in a manner that does not allow them to turn around freely, lie down, stand up, and fully extend their limbs; that means that standard veal crates, gestation crates for pregnant pigs, and battery cages for hens would not be allowed in the Commonwealth. Sponsor: Rep. Lewis
Please also do NOT cosponsor SD 1247, which would repeal portions of the recently passed animal control law or bills that would remove restrictions on body-gripping traps.