A new measure in Florida would make it illegal to leave a dog behind during a hurricane or other extreme weather.
Sarasota Sen. Joe Gruters filed a bill that would prohibit leaving an unattended or restrained dog during a hurricane, making the action a first-class misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and up to a $5,000 fine, according to WINK-TV.
The measure would revise the state’s animal cruelty standards; several counties already prohibit tethering animals during extreme weather conditions.
Leaving a dog “outside and unattended by use of a restraint during a manmade disaster or a natural disaster” would be prohibited under Gruters’ measure.
“We want to give these dogs a fighting chance,” Gruters said Monday during a committee hearing, according to WINK.
The bill cleared the Senate Agriculture Committee Monday on a unanimous vote.