by Brandon Jarvis

The Virginia state Senate advanced a bill Wednesday that would ban individuals who are convicted of felony animal abuse from owning an animal for the rest of their lives.

Sen. Barbara Favola, D-Arlington, is sponsoring the legislation. 

The bill would protect companion animals and equines, she said.

An amendment was added to the bill, allowing individuals to petition for their rights to own an animal again after five years. 

The bill passed 39-1, with Senator Bryce Reeves, R-Orange, voting against it. 

By vascope