For his work in leading newly passed legislation to protect dogs from inhumane treatment, Sen. Joe Fain, R-Auburn, was recognized as the Dr. Arnold C. Slater Legislator of the Year by the Washington State Veterinary Medicine Association.
“When you hug your dog tonight, tell it the story of Sen. Joe Fain,” said Dr. Kathy Hickey, president of the WSVMA. “He sponsored the measure creating humane standards for the tethering or chaining of dogs. Someone once wrote that the definition of a good person is one who scratches a dog where a dog can’t scratch itself. Dogs can’t write legislation, either. The WSVMA is proud to have backed Sen. Joe Fain’s bill, now signed into law. If dogs could vote, Joe would have a home for life.”
Fain was recognized for his broad support and legislative efforts on behalf of animals and animal welfare in Washington. The organization specifically cited Fain’s sponsorship of legislation creating humane standards for tethered dogs that will allow animal protection officers to better address issues, as well as a 2015 bill setting standards to protect animals left in hot cars.
“All creatures deserve humane treatment and protection from those who would do them harm,” said Fain, of Auburn, who serves as Senate Majority Floor Leader. “Unfortunately, some of our state laws allowed people to get away with animal cruelty with no repercussion. It’s critical that law enforcement, animal protection officers, and prosecutors have the tools they need to intervene in animal cruelty cases as early as possible and hold people accountable when necessary.”
The WSVMA is a statewide coalition of veterinarians who advocate for improved animal health and ensure laws allow and enable veterinary medical professionals to provide quality care.
Dr. Slater was a past president of the WSVMA and chaired the organization’s political action committee for 30 years.
Fain received the award at the Pacific Northwest Veterinary Conference in Tacoma.