In Pinellas and Hillsborough counties, more than 77,000 animals are abandoned each year. If a pet is abandoned for ten (10) days after a written notice to the owner at his last known address then the pet is to be delivered to the nearest humane society or animal control agency. Each year, many pets are delivered to the SPCA Tampa Bay due to the owners having died.
You can make a now plan for the care of your pet upon incapacity or death. You may include language in your will that provides for your pet care upon your death. You may sign a power of attorney that allows for someone to care for your pet if you become incapacitated but are still alive. Or since January 1, 2003, you may set up a trust that includes language that provides for the care of your pet while you are alive but incapacitated and/or after your death. See Sec. 736.0408, Fla. Stat. for the legislation that allows for the creation of a trust to provide for the care of an animal.
You may also contact the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Tampa Bay or my office, William D. Slicker, P.A., for wording that you can place in a will or trust to provide care for your pet.