Rep. Howrylak introduces legislation to make shelter animals Michigan’s state pet
State Representative Martin Howrylak of Troy introduced HB 5069, which would declare shelter animals as the official State Pet for the state of Michigan.
Each year, over 7 million companion animals enter shelters in the United States and approximately 2.7 million of the animals are euthanized. Sadly, Michigan is contributing to this troubling problem. According to a 2014 Michigan shelter survey, nearly one out of every four animals that enter a shelter in the state are eventually euthanized.
“Earlier this year, I met with sixth-graders from Larson Middle School in Troy who were deeply concerned about this issue,” said Rep. Howrylak. “Our hope is that by making a shelter pet Michigan’s State Pet, we will increase awareness regarding animal homelessness and encourage pet adoption throughout the state.”
“This project has been student-driven from the beginning,” said Larson Middle School teacher Cindy Christiansen. “My sixth-graders have read, researched, discussed and written about a real-world situation that they are really passionate about. Reaching outside the classroom walls has allowed them to see that their voice matters. Their passion and dedication is making a difference for shelter animals and residents of Michigan.”
HB 5069 was referred to the House Government Operations Committee for consideration. Other states such as, Tennessee, Colorado, and California recognize shelter pets as a state symbol.