Lawmaker proposes plan to protect pets

Illinois Capitol News
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ILLINOIS (WCIA) — As temperatures once again spiral down, it’s important your furry friends aren’t left fending for themselves in the bitter cold.

Now, some lawmakers want to give you more power to save an animal you think could be in danger. A new proposal would allow you to rescue a pet from someone else’ car.

It can be a matter of life and death for a pet. Illinois is one of nearly two dozen states which don’t already have this good Samaritan law in place.

Animal advocates say it’s a disservice to countless animals abandoned in extreme cold or heat.

Right now, you can be given a misdemeanor for breaking and entering someone’s car to rescue a pet. You must call authorities for help. The proposal would change that.

After first calling law enforcement, people who spot an animal in immediate danger can take matters into their own hands. A person could break a window to rescue a pet.

Some say the initiative is long overdue. After a rescue, you would need to wait at the car for law enforcement.

The bill’s sponsor calls it “reasonable” and a way to avoid criminal charges. While the legislation pends, some law enforcement agencies say the best advice is to leave animals safe at home. 

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