Bill allowing animals to be dyed in Florida Governor Rick Scott's hands

An Easter issue of decades past has been resurrected by the Florida legislature.  In 1967, the state outlawed coloring animals to protect baby chickens and bunnies.  

Before the ban, pet stores would dye the animals in pastels for Easter sales. But once the color faded, the animals were often being abandoned.  Now, just in time for Easter, a bill lifting the ban is on Governor Rick Scott's desk.

So far more than 4-thousand people have emailed Scott calling for a veto.  When asked about the bill Scott reminisced about chickens he briefly owned as a boy. "My grandfather gave me some chickens and I think he came to his senses and took them back." Scott added, "He didn't think they would probably last very long."

And that's exactly what opponents fear.  They say the bright colored animals will be irresistible to kids.  But after the color fades so will their zeal to care for them.

The plan to lift the ban has nothing to do with Easter.  It was hatched by a dog groomer who said the law kept people from entering their pets in dog shows.
"I don't have a problem with it as long as it's a food color dye that won't hurt the animal," said Carol Hoover, owner of Carol's Critters.

Even if governor Scott signs the bill, the ban wouldn't be lifted until July first, so for now, you can dye Easter eggs, but not the Easter bunny.

The governor has until Saturday to decide what to do with the bill.  He could sign it, veto it, or let it become law without his signature.  And, of course, opponents want to see the bill die.

Print this article Back to Top