The aftermath of CA Suspense Day-Quietly snuffs new bill seeking a 72-hour public notice before shelters euthanize dogs


California's 'Suspense Day' quietly snuffs Assembly Bill 595 Animal shelters: 72-hour public notice: euthanasia: study (AB 595). The bill was written to prevent healthy and adoptable dogs from being put down, often because of animal shelter overcrowding.

Assemblyman Bill Essayli introduced 'Bowie's Law.' The law's name was inspired by a puppy named Bowie. He was recently euthanized in December in L.A. County after a rescue group offered to adopt him. The new law would specify a uniform procedure for the euthanasia of dogs in animal shelters across the state.

California animal shelters would be required to post a public notice on their website. The notice must be posted at least 72 hours before euthanizing an animal. This gives the public an opportunity to adopt the animal before it is euthanized.

Watch the video below for more details on the California Capitol's 'Suspense Day.'

Assemblyman Bill Essayli also proposed a statewide study to collect data. The data to be collected was on the status of shelters and their euthanasia practices. The Department of Food and Agriculture would carry out the study. They would then submit a report to the Legislature by January 1, 2026.

The study was intended to support the creation of uniform guidelines on the euthanasia of dogs and cats in animal shelters. The goal was to prevent healthy and adoptable pets from being euthanized unnecessarily.

However, the bill was blocked by state lawmakers. They used the "suspense file" process. Committees do not explain their approval or denial in allowing a bill to move forward to get a chance to become a law later in the year.

Read the bill's full text below.

Existing law states that no adoptable animal should be euthanized. 'Bowie's Law' sought to establish new requirements for animal shelters to provide mandatory public notice before euthanizing any pet.

Supporters of the bill believe that this would increase transparency in animal shelters. Doing this would help prevent the euthanasia of healthy and adoptable pets that don't need to be put down. However, opponents expressed concerns about the cost and feasibility of implementing requirements in all animal shelters across the state. Such an implementation could be challenging and costly for the state to accomplish.

Despite its potential impact on reducing unnecessary animal deaths, see why the bill was blocked remains unclear. The bill would not have mandated the state to pay for certain costs. These costs were to be shouldered by local agencies and school districts.

The bill's fate highlights the complexities and politics of animal welfare legislation. Supporters argue for increased transparency. Opponents raise concerns about cost and feasibility. Despite its potential impact on animal welfare, animal welfare legislation's slow and difficult progress ultimately prevented 'Bowie's Law' from passing.

The bill's supporters grieve its failure to progress. Unfortunately, the complexities of animal welfare legislation provide an important reminder of the challenges facing those pushing for change. Despite the opposition, it is important to continue advocating for animal welfare and taking steps to prevent unnecessary animal deaths. With persistence and dedication, we can work to create a better world for our furry friends.

Watch the video below for more on Bowie, the puppy who was euthanized, despite being flagged for rescue by Underdog Heroes.

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