Emergency ‘Momma’s Law’ Passes DC Council “Establishes Temporary Protections from Extreme Cold Weather for Dogs”


From a press release:

“Today, at the DC Council’s Legislative Meeting, Councilmember Brandon T. Todd (D-Ward 4) introduced the Extreme Weather Protection for Animals Emergency Amendment Act of 2017. The bill resoundingly passed the Council and, like all emergency legislation, will take effect immediately upon the Mayor’s signature and expire in 90 days. It fills critical gaps in existing law that were exposed last month, when Momma, a pit bull in Petworth, was left outdoors in frigid temperatures for days, sparking a national conversation about animal welfare laws in the District of Columbia. Councilmember Todd announced the bill’s passage at a press conference with the Humane Rescue Alliance at their facility in Ward 4.

“After the outpouring of concern from Ward 4 residents – and people all over the country – regarding Momma’s safety and the inadequacy of existing animal welfare laws, I knew something had to be done,” said Councilmember Todd. “Although I am currently working on legislation to address this problem permanently, I was concerned that dogs like Momma would suffer in the interim. That is why I introduced this emergency legislation to ensure that this winter, no dog in the District of Columbia suffers the way Momma did. Even as Washington, DC faces unprecedented levels of Congressional interference, important work at the local level must continue. It is our Government’s responsibility to protect our four-legged friends who cannot protect themselves.”

“We applaud Councilmember Todd in taking this critical step in strengthening DC’s animal cruelty laws,” said Lisa LaFontaine, President and CEO of the Humane Rescue Alliance. “We look forward to working with him and his colleagues on the Council as we strive to permanently improve our collective ability to protect animals.”

The emergency law temporarily amends section § 22–1001 of the DC Code to define “protection from the weather” as “providing access to a shelter that is suitable for the age, condition, size, and type of each dog by doing the following: (A) accounting for the space needed for each dog, and ensuring that the space protects the dog from injury, rain, sleet, snow, hail, the adverse effects of cold, physical suffering, and impairment of health; and (B) ensuring that the shelter is raised at least 4 inches from the ground; includes a heat retaining, moisture wicking substance such as straw; and has a covered wind block.”

These requirements take effect whenever the Mayor declares a cold emergency alert. Failure to comply with these requirements will be punishable by a fine of up to $250, to be implemented by the Humane Rescue Alliance’s humane law enforcement officers.

Over the coming months, Councilmember Todd will continue to work with the Humane Rescue Alliance, the Department of Health, and other stakeholders on a permanent piece of legislation to improve the District’s animal welfare laws. That legislation – the Extreme Weather Protection for Animals Act of 2017, referred to by some as “Momma’s Law,” was introduced by Councilmember Todd on January 10, 2017, and has been referred to the DC Council Committee on Health. A hearing on the bill has not yet been scheduled.”

Recent Stories

And thanks to Helder Gil for sending our favorite, oft featured, old taxi. Sweet City Ride is made possible by readers like you!

Thanks to Pia for sending this “Beautiful Vintage Ford truck” Sweet City Ride is made possible by readers like you!

If you have any animal/pet photos you’d like to share please send an email to princeofpetworth(at)gmail(dot)com with ‘Animal Fix’ in the title and say the name of your pet and…

“Dear PoPville, In crazy service charges, sharing this one from Reveler’s Hour. 22% automatically added, which is then taxed (!). There was of course also the option to tip extra….

Dreaming of small-town charm with big-city convenience? Look no further than 7156 Main St in Clifton, Virginia! Nestled just 30 miles from the heart of Washington D.C., this picturesque property offers the best of both worlds.

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city to find tranquility in this quaint, historic town. With its tree-lined streets and friendly community atmosphere, Clifton is the perfect place to call home. Yet, with its close proximity to the nation’s capital, you’ll never be far from the excitement and opportunities of urban living.

Imagine weekends exploring local shops, dining at charming cafes, and enjoying outdoor adventures in nearby parks. Then, commute to D.C. for work or play, soaking in all the culture, entertainment, and career opportunities the city has to offer.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Want to get a head start on your spring cleaning? Use Well-Paid Maids, the DC area’s only certified living-wage home cleaning service. Well-Paid Maids pays all of its staff at least $24 per hour and provides a full benefits package including:

• Health, dental, vision, and life insurance

• 100% employer-paid commuting costs

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Opening Night: DC Environmental Film Festival

The 2024 DC Environmental Film Festival begins Thursday, March 21, at 7pm with the US Premiere screening of ANTARCTICA CALLING from Academy Award-winning director Luc Jacquet.

The Festival will continue through Saturday, March 30, offering dozens of screenings at venues

Aidan Leclaire Band in Concert

Local musician, Aidan Leclaire and his band will headline a night of rockin’ show by local bands at the iconic music venue, Songbyrd Music House.


Subscribe to our mailing list