LANSING — Today, state Rep. Padma Kuppa (D-Troy) introduced HB 4455 designating shelter pets as the official state pet of Michigan. This announcement coincides with National Pet Day, which is celebrated on April 11 of each year since 2006.

“Animals of all kinds and needs are currently living in shelters and rescues across our state waiting to find their forever home,” said Kuppa. “Recognizing shelter pets as Michigan’s state pet will not only raise awareness of animals in need, but will also serve as an example to the rest of the nation that Michiganders don’t just care about the people of our state, but about the wellbeing of our most loyal companions.”

According to The Humane Society of the United States, six to eight million animals end up in shelters and rescues each year. It is estimated that as many as half will not be adopted. If HB 4455 is passed, Michigan will join California, Ohio, Colorado, Illinois and a growing number of states raising awareness for shelter and rescue animals by designating them as their official state pet.