Police Officers In Illinois Can Now Remove Abused Animals From Life-Threatening Situations

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An amended state law looking out for abused and neglected animals will receive a welcome update in 2019.

Photo: @CatManChris ~ Princess; kitten rescued from IL hoarding situation in 2017 by Chris Poole

Going into effect on January 1st, animal control officers won’t be the only ones who can legally pull an animal from these situations. 

According to the Illinois Humane Care for Animals Act, Public Act 100-0740, local law enforcement can intercede on an animals behalf. 

This may just provide the additional precious time that means the difference between life and death. At the very least, temporarily removing the animals from the abusive situation while waiting on animal control.

Photo: @CatManChris ~ Clarence; stray trapped on 1/1/18 in Northern Illinois by Chris Poole

The subsection of the amendment reads as follows:

“Nothing [in this Section] shall prohibit a law enforcement officer from taking temporary custody of a dog or cat that is a companion animal that is exposed in a manner that places the dog or cat in a life-threatening situation for a prolonged period of time in extreme heat or cold conditions that may result in injury or death of the dog or cat or may result in hypothermia, hyperthermia, frostbite, or similar condition.”

Photo: @CatManChris ~ Clarence; stray trapped on 1/1/18 in Northern Illinois by Chris Poole

In a similar situation, police officers already had legal rights to remove an animal from a vehicle in life threatening circumstances. 

Thankfully, by any means necessary. 

The owners of the poor animals can be charged with a misdemeanor; felony charges if they are repeat offenders.

Sadly, there are hundreds of estimated deaths each year due to animals being left in vehicles. 

Photo: urdogs.com

“Sec. 7.1. Confinement in motor vehicle. No owner or person shall confine any animal in a motor vehicle in such a manner that places it in a life or health threatening situation by exposure to a prolonged period of extreme heat or cold, without proper ventilation or other protection from such heat or cold.”

“In order to protect the health and safety of an animal, an animal control officer, law enforcement officer, or Department investigator who has probable cause to believe that this Section is being violated shall have authority to enter such motor vehicle by any reasonable means under the circumstances after making a reasonable effort to locate the owner or other person responsible.”

Photo: Stillshot of YouTube video of Marmalade and JessiCAT safely enjoying the winter weather from indoors

Illinois, where I lived until 2005 and then again in 2016-2018, has a climate that rivals the world’s largest teeter-totter.

Winter mornings, you can wake up to freezing conditions, be sweating by lunch, enjoy a thunderstorm at dinner and be shoveling snow in your driveway as the night falls. 

Photo: JessiCAT; Chris shoveling IL snow in negative temperatures 2016

These extreme conditions aren’t limited to the winter months either. Summer brings sweltering temperatures that reach into the 100’s.

Hypothermia, where the body temperature falls below normal and Hyperthermia, quickly elevated body temperatures, mean year-round dangers for our animals.

The normal range of temperatures for felines is 99.5-102.5 Fahrenheit. For dogs, the average temperature is 100°F to 102.5°F.

Photo: cdn.hirschfeldhomes.com

“On cold days in wintertime, outdoor activities should be minimized and pets should be closely supervised as hypothermia can occur quickly. In case of moderate to severe hypothermia, pets should be wrapped with a blanket, placed on a stable surfaced and rushed to the closest veterinary hospital.”

Heat-related illnesses can be very serious as we recently experienced. 

If you suspect your cat is suffering you should contact your vet or emergency veterinarians straight away!

Photo property of Cole and Marmalade ~ Cole during recent health scare – his temperature was 106!!! Still unknown cause

Now, if we can just get them to amend these inhumane practices (in RED below)…

“Animal cruelty doesn’t include certain allowed practices, including: ear cropping, declawing, defanging, tail docking, and spaying;”.

Photo: @CatManChris ~ Feral Mama in IL 2017; was provided with waterproof shelter


Related Story: Tiny Kitten Saved From Freezing Conditions!

Related Video: 2 Abandoned Cats Rescued from FREEZING Weather

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