JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Just a few months after her 17-month-old son was mauled to death by a neighbor's dog, Destiny Andres is pushing for a new law that would ban dogs from being tethered or chained while unattended.
"I can't save my son," says Andres. "I could try to save others."
Andres was unloading groceries when her son, Dylan, wandered into the neighbor's yard to pet their dog. The Rottweiler attacked Dylan. The neighbor wasn't breaking the law by keeping their dog chained up. But animal activists believe that should be illegal.
"The state law doesn't protect the public with the law that's in place," says Renee Rivard, with the League of Humane Voters.
Rivard drove four hours from her home in Tampa to speak out about the issue during a Jacksonville City Council meeting. She's hoping to persuade the council to create an ordinance in Duval County that would ban dogs from being left chained or tethered, while unattended. The dogs would be able to be left alone if there was a fence.
"We don't want to see this happen to any other children," Rivard told Action News.
In a statement, Scott Trebatoski, the Division Chief of Animal Care & Protective Services, wrote, "we are conducting a comprehensive review of all the relevant issues related to the tethering of dogs. It is an important issue and we plan to work with citizens to resolve any issues. We want to be thorough, so it is going to take some time to look into this matter."
Several other counties in Florida have already passed similar ordinances. Destiny Andres knows a new law in Duval County wouldn't bring back her son, but it could save another family from the same heartache.