Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

House Unanimous in Support of 'Padi' Bill

Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

House Unanimous in Support of 'Padi' Bill

Article excerpt

LEGISLATURE 2016

TALLAHASSEE -- Legislation that would give dog owners the opportunity to challenge euthanasia decisions in severe dog bite cases passed the Florida House unanimously Wednesday.

The bill sponsored by Sarasota Republican Rep. Greg Steube, R- Sarasota, was prompted by the outcry over the fate of a Manatee County dog named "Padi" that bit off part of a four-year-old boy's ear.

The dog's owner, a veterinarian, said the animal was provoked, a claim disputed by the boy's babysitter.

Many in the community opposed a decision to euthanize Padi, but state law does not allow legal defenses in cases where an animal causes severe injury or death and is slated for euthanasia.

A circuit judge found the state law regarding dog bites unconstitutional last month, but the ruling only applies in Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto counties. …

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