Petplan launches petition to prevent pets from being left unattended in cars

After another summer filled with news reports about pets being left unattended inside scorching-hot vehicles, Petplan Insurance is taking the fight against the troubling trend all the way to the White House.

Petplan launched the "Driven to Bark" initiative on Aug. 4, in which it is attempting to get 100,000 signatures on a petition at We the People, the White House's official petition site. If the signature goal is reached within 30 days, the petition will make its way to the Obama administration for consideration.

The petition will encourage all states to enact laws prohibiting people from leaving animals unattended in cars in extreme temperatures, as currently only 15 states have such statutes in place, Petplan said.

States that currently have laws prohibiting leaving animals in vehicles with extreme temperatures are:

  • California
  • Arizona
  • Nevada
  • Minnesota
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota
  • Illinois
  • Maine 
  • New Hampshire
  • Vermont
  • West Virginia
  • Maryland
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Rhode Island

According to Steve Shell, vice president of veterinary channel development for Petplan, the hope is that the petition will inspire positive change across the country.

"Our hope is that with more awareness, and by elevating this issue to a national level, more people will be Driven to Bark, including local, state, and national legislators who can help pass the laws necessary to make sure this suffering stops for good," Shell said in a letter encouraging people to sign the petition.

For further details about the initiative and information about the consequences of leaving pets in hot cars, which can be shared with pet owners, visit Petplan's Driven to Bark page at

How to support Driven to Bark

To show your support for the "Driven to Bark" initiative, you can provide your signature on the petition at We the People.

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