Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Florida Laws On Pets In Cars

A car's passenger compartment can reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit within 30 minutes on hot days.

Leaving a pet unattended in a parked car on a hot day -- when temperatures can climb to 120 degrees Fahrenheit inside the car -- can result in irreversible organ damage or death, according to the Humane Society of the United States. With average temperatures often exceeding 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer, Florida, and its cities and counties, instituted various laws and statutes to police the issue.

Local Ordinances

The ability to regulate the transportation of pets in vehicles lies mainly with county and city governments in Florida under the auspices of civil ordinances and statutes. For example, the City of Miami and Dade County make it a civil violation to transport animals in the trunk of a car or loose in the open bed of a truck.

State Laws

As of 2010, Florida Statute 828.12 states any person who carries a pet in a vehicle in a cruel or inhumane manner is guilty of a first degree misdemeanor. Statute 828.13 says that anyone confining an animal in any place without adequate water, food or exercise can also be charged with a first degree misdemeanor.


According to the Michigan State University College of Law, only 14 states, not including Florida, specifically address the issue of leaving unattended pets in parked cars as of 2010. These laws state that for a person to commit a crime, conditions of extreme heat or cold, a failure to provide food or water, or a lack of adequate ventilation must be present.

Tags: degrees Fahrenheit, degree misdemeanor, first degree, first degree misdemeanor