Animal lovers to rally on Capitol steps

It's been a long time since animal lovers rallied on the steps of the state Capitol.

Hundreds turned out six years ago to make known their views on Pennsylvania's puppy mills.

Now two pro-pet lawmakers are urging the public to join them tomorrow, Oct. 22, at 11 a.m. for Bring Your Dog to Harrisburg day to support a new package of bills to protect pets

Sens. Andy Dinniman (D., Chester) and Rich Alloway (R., Franklin) organized the rally in recognition of Adopt a Shelter Pet Week in Pennsylvania.

The lawmakers will announce a package of bills aimed at pet protection during a press conference at 11 a.m., followed by a Bring Your Dog to Harrisburg rally on the Capitol steps at 11:30 a.m.

“It is time to strengthen the penalties for animal cruelty and for the Commonwealth to recognize pets as cherished members of our families rather than mere agricultural commodities. We need to show strong vocal support for such changes on the Capitol steps," said Dinniman.

“Despite the millions of loving families in Pennsylvania who have opened their homes to pets, many animals across the state still suffer from neglect, mistreatment and abuse,” Alloway said. “By bringing pet owners together with their legislators, we can help raise awareness of these issues and work toward solutions that will improve the lives of animals who will eventually become cherished members of our families.”

If it rains the press conference will be held in the Capitol Media Center. The rally will be held on the Capitol steps, rain or shine.

Make sure to keep dogs leashed and bring adequate food, water and waste disposal supplies. Also, participants should keep in mind that dogs are not allowed in the Capitol Building. The Dog Law Enforcement Office will be on hand as well to remind folks to make sure their dogs are licensed and have their rabies vaccinations.