May 1, 2017

California Animal Advocates Gather in Sacramento for Voices for Animals Day

California Voices for Animals Lobby Day

The ASPCA’s Susan Riggs with Senator Atkins and Assemblymembers Maienschein, Caballero and Quirk-Silva

Wednesday, April 26, was a great day for animals in the Golden State! Animal advocates from across northern California gathered at the state capitol in Sacramento last week to rally for stronger animal-protection legislation at this year’s California Voices for Animals Day.

During the event, advocates got down to business at meetings with their state legislators and staff in support of passing stronger animal welfare bills, including bills to encourage the adoption of shelter pets and increase pet-friendly housing opportunities for families throughout California. They also spoke with their legislators about important bills that would protect consumers from predatory pet leasing practices and misleading advertisements used by unscrupulous breeders.

Assemblymember Steinorth with an adoptable pup

Assemblymember Steinorth with an adoptable pup

The event sent a strong message to policymakers that animal welfare is a priority issue for Californians—and lawmakers agreed about the importance of passing animal-protection legislation.

“In the last several years I have worked closely with the ASPCA and authored legislation to protect animals against cruelty and abuse,” said Assemblymember Brian Maienschein. “This year, I introduced two bills supported by the ASPCA that go even further in preventing animal homelessness.” His bills, A. B. 1137 to increase pet-friendly housing and A.B. 1138 to better protect consumers from deceptive pet sales, were among the priority legislation discussed during the day’s meetings.

Assemblymember Anna Caballero also spoke of the need for stronger animal welfare laws. “It is imperative that we protect consumers and pets equally. The leasing of pets burdens animals and pet owners by creating a false sense of an established home and family,” she said. “My bill, A.B. 1491, bans the practice of leasing pets and saves both families and pets from heartbreak.”

Rescued Beagles from Beagle Freedom Project

Rescued Beagles from Beagle Freedom Project

Senator Toni Atkins and Assemblymembers Sharon Quirk-Silva and Marc Steinorth also spoke to the crowd.

But that wasn’t all! The event also featured an adoptions fair where eventgoers were treated to cuddles from adoptable dogs from over a dozen local rescue groups. Palomacy Pigeon & Dove Rescue was on site with rescue birds, and attendees got the chance to meet Beagles rescued from laboratories who were in attendance with Beagle Freedom Project. By the end of the day, at least one deserving dog found a new home—with more to come as several people filled out adoption applications!

We want to thank the lawmakers, advocates and rescue groups who were able to join us at this exciting, important event. We also want to thank our supporters in California and nationwide for standing by our side as we fight to protect animals.

Don’t miss your state’s next lobby day or grassroots advocacy event! Join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade to stay up-to-date on fun and informational events near you.

An adoptable dog named Miss Sadie from the Front Street Animal Shelter in Sacramento

An adoptable dog named Miss Sadie from the Front Street Animal Shelter in Sacramento