PALMETTO, Fla. (WWSB) - A new bill to protect animals across the country was recently signed by the President Trump. The legislation, introduced by Suncoast Congressman Vern Buchanan and South Florida Congressman Ted Deutch, bans extreme forms of animal cruelty and torture.
This comes after several cases high-profile of animal cruelty this year. Does the name “dumpster dog" sound familiar?
ABC7 got a chance to catch up with the owner of Daisy, who now goes by Liberty, alongside her sister Daphne, who is also a victim of animal cruelty.
Owner Patrick Mahoney says he’s relieved this bill was signed.
“There’s finally something that has some teeth to it so this won’t happen again."
When Mahoney isn’t helping put out forest and wildfires, his top priority is his four rescue animals, which include Liberty and Daphne.
Liberty was found in a dumpster over the summer by two waste management workers. Daphne was found tied to a pole.
Mahoney says that abuse has had lasting effects on his pets.
“Because Daphne was tied to a pole, a lot of noises spook her,” he explained.
Under the new bill signed by the president, the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture (PACT) Act prohibits intentional acts of serious bodily harm to an animal. People who are found guilty of animal cruelty will now be faced with federal felony charges, fines and up to seven years in prison.
“It’s long past due. These animals are being abused everyday and people who are doing it are getting off," says Mahoney.
Mahoney says even with the PACT Act, he still believes anyone with a history of animal cruelty should be listed on a registry.