ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York is trying to ensure that when people are evicted their pets aren't left behind.

A new state law signed Thursday by Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo will require officers serving eviction papers to check a property for pets and make sure they leave the property with their owners.

Under the old law, animals such as dogs, cats, birds or fish were treated like non-living property. That meant that animals can be left behind for days or even abandoned.

One of the bill's sponsors, Republican Sen. Jim Tedisco, says no pet should be treated like an old couch and left behind.