Libre, the Puppy Left for Dead, Inspires Tougher Animal Cruelty Law in Pennsylvania

Earlier this year, the story of a neglected puppy named Libre outraged and horrified animal lovers, but the story came with one silver lining: the possibility of tougher animal cruelty laws in Pennsylvania.

Libre, a four-month-old Boston terrier puppy, was barely alive when he arrived at Dillsburg Veterinary Center and his future didn’t look promising. On top of being emaciated and mangy, he was suffering from secondary infections and had maggots in his wounds.

Posted by Dillsburg Veterinary Center on Tuesday, July 5, 2016

He had been intentionally left by his owner to die slowly on his own, but he was fittingly rescued on Independence Day, thanks to the kindness of Dextin Orme who saw him on the property and sought help. Libre was given the best chance possible to survive by Janine Guido, founder of Speranza Animal Rescue, who later became his permanent mom.

Posted by Libre, the Bug Eyed Miracle on Friday, July 22, 2016

The case caused controversy and protests, and Libre’s owner was finally charged by the Lancaster County District Attorney. While Libre’s story continued to spread, Libre slowly began recovering from his horrifying past.

#librestrong #sundayfunday #lifedoesntgetmuchbetterthanthis

Posted by Speranza Animal Rescue on Sunday, August 7, 2016

In July, Libre’s story also reached Senator Richard Alloway, who pledged at the time to introduce legislation that would strengthen animal cruelty laws in the state.

He kept his word and has just introduced Libre’s Law (SB 1372), which will increase penalties for the cruelty and neglect of companion animals. The law adds a new classification for offenders who cause the death or serious bodily injury of an animal. If it passes, violators could be found facing third-degree felony charges.

“I have always had a strong interest in promoting responsible pet ownership and preventing the mistreatment of animals. Animal abusers deserve to receive a punishment that fits the heinous nature of their crimes,” Sen. Alloway said in a statement. “Libre’s story inspired me to take the next steps to ensure no animal is forced to endure the kind of awful treatment that nearly took the life of this kind-hearted animal.”

Libre’s in the House!

Posted by Senator Richard Alloway II on Wednesday, September 28, 2016

So far, the bill is garnering widespread pubic support. Hundreds of people attended a rally to show their support last week, where Libre made a cameo.

“Seeing him march in front of me and all those people screaming his name, that was so cool,” said Guido, who added, ““I’m hoping that if the law gets passed, people will start taking animal cruelty and neglect more seriously, and there’s going to get more than a slap on the wrist, and maybe they’ll learn from it.”

Hopefully lawmakers in Pennsylvania will pass this legislation and ensure that those who needlessly, or intentionally, cause the suffering of animals are held accountable with far more appropriate penalties.


Please sign and share the petition urging lawmakers in Pennsylvania to support and co-sponsor Libre’s Law.

The folks at Viscul Creative contacted us when we first rescued Libre. They wanted to document his journey.


Posted by Speranza Animal Rescue on Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Photo credit: Thinkstock


sandy Gardner
sandy Gardner2 years ago

Thank You Libre!

Marie W.
Marie W2 years ago

Execution of abusers sounds good.

Jennifer H.
Jennifer H2 years ago

Stronger penalties are definitely needed. Thanks for sharing.

Pinke A.
Pinke A2 years ago

Better law now,please. Sad stories like this,suffering puppies are just too much,also way too many of these. If the law is not good enough,the cruel "owners" will go on. With better law,it's easier to punish them. Then it will work as a warning!

Freya S.
Freya S2 years ago

This poor puppy, justice now, stricter laws on animal rights and treatment.

Fi T.
Past Member 2 years ago

Justice wanted!

Justyna L.
Justyna L2 years ago


W. C.
W. C2 years ago

Thank you.

Kristi M.
Kristi M2 years ago


Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.