Pet rescue bill passes Indiana House

By Katie Stancombe

INDIANAPOLIS – Proposed legislation that would allow good Samaritans to rescue pets locked in hot cars passed through the House Monday with an 80-14 vote.

Author of House Bill 1085, Rep. Tony Cook, R-Cicero, said that the bill could prevent many needless injuries and deaths of domestic pets by giving rescuers immunity if they believe the pet to be in imminent danger.

The bill would also require the potential rescuers to call 911 before taking it upon themselves to use force to rescue the animal.

But some lawmakers questioned who would be held accountable if the rescued animal ran away or bit its rescuer after the vehicle has been broken into.

Rep. Linda Lawson, D-Hammond, said that a dog left in a hot car for too long would have a similar to a person experiencing a heat stroke.

“You’re not going to be able to move around, you’re not going to try and get away,” Lawson said. “You’re going to be a pretty sick dog.”

The bill will now move to the Senate.

Katie Stancombe is a reporter for, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.

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