Seaford dog's death inspires 'Buoy's Law' to protect pets against dangerous medications
A new state law aimed at protecting pets from dangerous medications was inspired by the death of a Seaford dog.
"Buoy's Law" is named after a 3-year-old yellow Labrador retriever who was prescribed a painkiller by the vet after knee surgery in 2013.
The dog's owner, Mary Kate Tischler, says the drug caused Buoy's kidneys to fail. The dog was put place on dialysis and eventually had to be put to sleep.
Tischler and her husband, James, channeled their grief into action.
"I couldn't live with myself if I didn't try to effectuate change as a result of his untimely death," Tischler says.
She says they were never given any warning that the painkiller could kill their pet, so they worked with local senators and Assembly members to require veterinarians to provide that information to pet owners.
During Tischler's push for passage of the bill, her husband died in 2016.
"I knew that I needed to keep pushing for that law for both my husband and for Buoy," Tischler says.
Buoy's Law passed both houses of the state Legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Kathy Hochul in late 2022. It will take effect in June.
Tischler says when the governor signed the bill into law, it gave her a sense of closure to finally bury Buoy's remains.
On Thursday, she and her family put Buoy's ashes to rest beneath a memorial in her frontyard reading "Buoy Inspired Change."
"He died for a reason, which is to help other animals in New York state not suffer the same fate that he did," Tischler says.
The Tischlers filed a lawsuit against the Veterinary Medical Center of Long Island where Buoy was given the painkiller.
The case eventually settled.