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Tell Nevada to Make Animal Cruelty a Felony

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Nevada is one of the few states that does not have felony animal cruelty laws that apply to all animals. Senate Bill 223 would make animal cruelty a felony offense. Current law allows for three misdemeanor convictions before a felony charge is sought, except in the case of show dogs. This bill reflects the understanding that all animals deserve to be treated equally and any willful violence taken upon them is a serious matter.

The bill has been nicknamed "Cooney's Law" for the dog that was brutally killed by her owner with a box cutter. The man, Raymond Rios, believed a mouse had crawled into Cooney's stomach and was causing her pain. After admitting what he had done, Rios pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge. This came with a $640 fine and time served. Rios is a free man, banned from owning dogs for two years.

SB 223 is supported by a number or animal organizations and domestic violence shelters. The bill is important not only for animal safety but for human safety as well. The link between animal abuse and domestic violence is very real. Studies have shown that people who commit violence against animals are five times more likely to commit violence against people.

Sign the petition urging Nevada to pass SB 223. No animal should have to suffer as Cooney did.

Photo Credit: jeffreyw



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