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Dogs Here May Soon See Big Changes to Their Car Rides

New Florida bill would ban pups sticking their heads out windows of moving cars, sitting in driver's lap
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 22, 2023 9:25 AM CST
Florida Dogs May Soon Have to Give This Up for Good
Sorry, buddy, this may soon be coming to an end in the Sunshine State.   (Getty Images/Chalabala)

When dogs go for car rides, many of them use the time to "drive and chill," sticking their heads out the window to catch the cool breeze as their human cruises along the thoroughfare. In Florida, however, that kind of carefree canine behavior may soon be coming to an end, as a new bill has been filed in the state Senate to prohibit that and other activity in the name of animal welfare, reports WESH. SB 932 not only puts the kibosh on dogs extending their head "or any other body part" out the window when the car is in motion—it also prohibits dogs from sitting on the driver's lap while they're driving or take a joyride in a car that's being towed.

The legislation would also bar transporting dogs "on the running board, fender, hood, or roof of a motor vehicle," or in the trunk or other enclosed space meant for cargo. Plus, no more sitting free of restraints: The bill calls for dogs to be kept in a crate, held by someone other than the driver, or secured with a harness or seatbelt. "Although most dogs love to stick their heads out open windows, the wind can seriously irritate mucous membranes and blow pieces of grit or other debris into their eyes," the Humane Society notes, per Fox News. "Pets could also be seriously injured by objects as you drive down the road."

Those who breach the bill could see moving violation tickets. Other animals are also mentioned in the bill, but not in terms of car rides. The legislation makes it illegal to declaw cats, unless the procedure is cleared for medical reasons, as well as against the law to sell rabbits in the months of March and April (Easter season). If the bill passes both chambers of the state Legislature, it moves on to the governor's desk and could take effect on Oct. 1. (Read more dogs stories.)

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