Animal Rights

Fabian's Law Makes Arizona Dog Owners More Responsible

| by Phyllis M Daugherty

Fabian's Law Signed by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer

Our beloved miniature poodle, Fabian, was killed by an unleashed pit-bull on September 5, 2009, at our home in Glendale, AZ, Fabian was on his owner's leash, in his own driveway, when a neighbor's pit-bull ran… across the street, and viciously attacked him,” writes Richard Andrade.

On April 25, 2011, Governor Jan Brewer signed Fabian’s Law (HB 2137), a grassroots effort to make dog owners more responsible, which gained worldwide attention. It will go into effect on July 20, 2011. A ceremonial signing is anticipated in October.

“The numbers are staggering--just for Maricopa County in 2010, 900 “dog-on-dog” attacks, and 5,825 dog related bites on people. Sally and I are just 2 people who go to work every day.  Because of this tragic event in our lives, we could not sit by and do nothing, because “dog-on-dog” attacks occur too often. I feel overjoyed and proud that Fabian’s Law is going to save lives of both pets and people. But I am also angry that we even need laws to protect the victims of vicious dog attacks,” says Richard Andrade. 

Fabian’s Law is not only about our Furry Family Members,” Sally Andrade tells us, “but also placing stiffer penalties on aggressive dogs that attack people.  

Fabian’s Law (aka “Vicious Dog Owner Responsibility Act”) is not breed specific and would provide civil remedies for owners who often watch their pet die in a brutal, unprovoked attack and are left with veterinary and other bills and a broken heart.

--The bill makes it a misdemeanor if a dog, classified as aggressive, attacks a person or domestic animal.

--The owner can also be charged with a misdemeanor if the aggressive dog escapes the owner’s yard or leash.

“We had so much support. Lives will be saved because of this law,” Sally said, “We want to thank all who signed petitions and sent letters to the AZ Legislature, which passed Fabian’s Law on April 19.  

“We especially want to thank the members of the media who supported us and gave us hope.

“We are forever grateful to Dr. Rodrigo Silva, Director of Maricopa County Animal Care and Control, who wrote the original wording, and to Camelwest Animal Hospital where Fabian was treated.   

“We thank Governor Brewer and all the Legislators that voted for H.B. 2137, especially Representatives Montenegro who introduced Fabian’s Law; Representative, Chabin, our hero, who “saved the day;” and Senator Melvin “for never giving up”.

“Kari Nienstedt, State Director from the Humane Society of the United States, sent a copy of Fabian’s Law to HSUS Legal Dept. so that it could be a model for other States. Without the HSUS support, we feel that Fabian’s Law would have never happened.

This is what the Andrade’s want everyone to know, “You can have Fabian’s Law in your state.  Sally and I are ready to help and support this cause. Fabian’s Law has passed and your state can do the same.

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