It’s Legal to Rescue Dogs in Florida!
If you live in Florida and see a pet locked in a sweltering car, its now legal to break into the car to make a rescue!
The law, House bill 131 was signed into law by Republican Governor Rick Scott, makes it legal to rescue people or animals “in imminent danger of suffering harm.” In Florida heat, that could happen in mere minutes.
You must make sure the door is locked and you must call law enforcement or 911 immediately and wait with the person or pet until law enforcement officials arrive. Unfortunately, the law only pertains to domestic animals listed on the bill as dogs, cats, or other animals that are domesticated and kept as household pets. This means the law does not allow for the rescue of livestock or other farm animals.
Anyone attempting a break-in to rescue a domesticated animal will be immune from civil liability for the damage to the motor vehicle.
Make sure to leave animals at home when you are running errands. Children, vulnerable adults, and animals should never be left in locked vehicles! Temperatures rise very quickly in locked vehicles, even with the windows down and even in the shade!