While most legislation deals with human behavior and welfare, efforts to provide for the care and welfare of pets and other animals is also important. This session I am working on two initiatives that will help strengthen our laws to protect animals from injury and abuse.
Two sessions ago I cast the lone vote in the Senate against legislation to permit hunting and trapping in state parks. I am introducing legislation which will prohibit persons from setting, operating, or otherwise using a steel−jawed trap, a body−gripping trap, or a snare to trap an animal in a state park.
Like many others, I enjoy our state parks’ many trails and beautiful scenery. With this legislation comes the opportunity to revisit the matter of trapping in state parks. I remain hopeful that eventually Wisconsin will return to a period where the public, tourists, and their pets can enjoy our state parks and other outdoor activities without fear of being caught and injured in a trap.
Another matter is animal abuse. Current state law only requires that veterinarians report abuse when an animal is suspected to have been used in animal fighting. I’ve introduced legislation that will require veterinarians to report any suspected case of animal abuse to law enforcement or to a humane officer.
Animal abuse is a serious crime and can often be a red flag for domestic or other abuse that may be occurring in a home or family. Mistreatment of animals is one issue which we can better address with the help of veterinarians. As experts in assessing injuries and ailments, veterinarians are invaluable in identifying the mistreatment of animals and protecting animals who have been subject to cruel treatment.
If you would like to contact me or my office on any matters of interest to you, please feel free to contact me by mail at: Senator Fred Risser, PO Box 7882, Madison, WI 53707-7882, by phone at: (608) 266-1627, or by e-mail at: Sen.Risser@legis.wisconsin.gov