19/43 News Continues To Fight For New Animal Cruelty Law

CLEVELAND - Right now, people who torture pets get a slap on the wrist -- maybe three months in jail and a fine, but 19/43 News is fighting to change the law, and on Friday, another step was taken.

The battle started with a dog named Shady. The loveable mutt was stabbed 17 times by her owner last April.

Somehow, Shady survived the ordeal.

When 19/43 News' Denise Dufala heard about what happened to Shady, she got state legislators together to figure out what could be done.

On Friday, those lawmakers took action when they introduced a new bill that would send people who hurt their animals to prison for up to three years, and force them to get counseling.

Dufala said that animal cruelty is an issue that affects more than animal lovers because in 88 percent of the homes where a dog, like Shady, is abused, a child is also being abused.

Animal lovers have tried for more than 100 years to change Ohio's animal cruelty law, but farmers and hunters fought them. However, state Rep. Timothy Grendell said that this new bill is different.

"This bill specifically targets companion animals -- dogs, cats and household pets," Grendell said.

The bill is not likely to be passed unless you write letters to Ohio's Speaker of the House at the following address: