Florida Dems Drop Bid to Babysit Dog Owners

(RepublicanNews.org) – One Florida lawmaker has apparently found the limit of her constituents’ tolerance for legislative babysitting of citizens’ dog-owning practices.

Democrat Lauren Book, a state senator from the Plantation district, is dropping her proposed ban on drivers allowing their dogs to stick their heads out of car windows after constituents signaled they’d had enough.

Book’s bill would have banned drivers from allowing a dog to “extend its head or any other body part outside a motor vehicle window while the person is operating the motor vehicle.”

The hyper-specific legislation did Book no favors with Floridians. She said constituents flooded her office with objections and complaints, some comparing her to the Disney villainess Cruella de Ville.

Book acknowledged the pushback, saying, “it’s very clear that people don’t like that provision.” Oddly, she then complained that objectors didn’t address other, non-dog–heads-out-of-car-windows-related portions of her bill.

Book will be getting rid of this portion of the bill, but says she’s still committed to legislation she believes is needed to protect dogs from their owners.

After scrapping that portion of the bill, Book said, she wants to “protect” the “intent of the animal welfare community” who proposed that policy. Book said “vets” wanted the policy because they often treat injuries from dogs who stick their heads out of car windows.

In the meantime, Book would like dog owners to follow her instructions and get what she calls “doggles,” apparently old-school aviator-style goggles for dogs. These will, she said, “keep our furry friends safe” and protect their eyes from debris while they enjoy the breeze.

The original provision of the bill would have made dog owners who disobeyed it guilty of a moving traffic violation. 

In her response to constituent pushback, Book said her family had three dogs who also love sticking their heads out of car windows.

Other portions of the bill remain, including a ban on declawing cats, which is more widely agreed to be unnecessarily disfiguring. It also includes a ban on testing cosmetics on animals.

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