Legislature wants pets allowed in emergency shelters

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – When it comes to natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes, we can usually count on shelters to open for those who may find themselves with no place to go, but now Massachusetts lawmakers are trying to make those emergency shelters available to our pets, too.

The ASPCA has commended the Massachusetts House of Representatives for passing a bill that would require local governments to include strategies to support the needs of people with pets or service animals in the event of a natural or man-made disaster.

It would allow people to bring their pets with them to emergency shelters.

Many people consider their pets to be a part of the family, and 22News found support for the proposal.

“It sound like great legislation as long they allow humans to go in first, people with pets second, and probably separating the pets from the humans that aren’t uncomfortable with the pets,” Bill Murphy of Springfield said.

“People have pets for a reason and they obviously love their pets. They spend all this money at the vet and I’m pretty sure if anything would happen you’d want your entire family there,” Kris Jackson of Holyoke said.

The Senate passed the bill last year. It now goes to Governor Deval Patrick to be signed into law.

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