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Animal Welfare

Anti-Puppy Mill Legislation News & Updates

(Please see my previous post, where I compiled a list of puppy mill legislation across the country.)

CONNECTICUT

Congratulations to Connecticut! Public Act 14-77, An Act Concerning Certain Recommendations of the Task Force on the Sale of Cats and Dogs from Inhumane Origins at Connecticut Pet Shops, was signed into law last week:

“There is evidence that puppy mills around the country have employed practices that any reasonable person would consider inhumane. By signing this bill into law, we are setting standards in Connecticut to ensure that animals are living in humane conditions. I would like to thank the chairs of the Taskforce on the Sale of Cats and Dogs from Inhumane Origins at Connecticut Pet Shops and all of those who provided constructive input to make this bill a reality.” – Gov. Malloy, http://news.hamlethub.com/waterburywest/politics/565-pet-shop-standards-law-signed

Under this law, no pet store can sell or offer to resell any dog or cat from a breeder who:

  • doesn’t have a current license issued by the USDA and any applicable state agency;
  • violated the pet dealer-related regulations of the USDA within two years prior to the purchase;
  • committed three or more “indirect violations” of pet dealer-related regulations of the USDA during the two-year period prior to such purchase if the violations pertained to the health or welfare of an animal.

The law also prohibits any pet store from selling or offering to resell any dog or cat from a person who had done any of the bullets listed above. Pet shops who violate those provisions will be fined up to $100,000 or jailed (not more than 30 days), or both, per violation.

NEW YORK

Another exciting update to share: Suffolk County recently signed The Pet Dealer Bill into law! As LION reports, this law will: “require dealers to provide inspection reports of the breeding facilities on request and bans dealers in the county from buying animals from commercial breeding facilities that have:

  • “A direct violation from the U.S. Department of Agriculture within the past two years;”
  • “No access” violations on the two most recent inspection reports from the USDA;
  • Three or more different indirect violations, other than “no access violations,” on the most recent USDA report; or
  • “One or more recurring indirect violations on the most recent USDA report.”

Paws crossed that other municipalities in New York will follow suit —  Suffolk is the first to regulate pet sales since the state law, signed in January, gives them the power to do so.

FLORIDA

Looks like Delray Beach in South Florida will be banning the sale of puppy mill dogs! Commissioners gave “an initial OK” to the bill. As Rich Anderson, CEO of Peggy Adams Animal Rescue, says, an unfortunate amount of local dogs and cats are waiting to be adopted. Anderson explains:

“On any given day in Palm Beach County, upwards of 2,000 to 3,000 animals at local shelters, a lot of these are pure bred dogs that are available.”

Will this ban help get those dogs and cats out of the shelters? Keep in mind that there is only one pet store in Delray. While the law may appear symbolic, I still support it — the legislation sends a strong message to the public that the welfare of animals is important. Moreover, legislating against puppy mills in one city will create a domino affect. As Delray Beach City Commissioner Shelly Petrolia says:

“There’s a lot of local passion behind this movement. The momentum is sweeping across the nation. This is an issue not only about right and wrong, but what society is willing to accept as the treatment of man’s best friend.”

ILLINOIS

Some residents in Naperville are supporting a ban on the sale of dogs from puppy mills.

“They are not going to cut into their profits in order to give these animals a better life. It’s just livestock to them. They’re there to make money.” — Dee Santucci (board member of the Puppy Mill Project), http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/suburbs/naperville_lisle/ct-puppy-mills-naperville-tl-0626-20140619,0,386688.story

If you live in Naperville, please note that the next public discussion will be August 19th. Until then, Council members and Naperville Mayor George Pradel will be doing research so they can examine “both sides” of the controversy. Here’s hoping that they come out on the right side — which is that the city should promote adoption and rescue.

NORTH CAROLINA

According to the North Carolina Humane Society, the state recently had its fourth puppy mill bust *this year* and the twentieth in *three years*. 56 dogs were rescued in the bust. Needless to say, there needs to be a crack down on puppy mills in the state — and North Carolina is finally taking a step in the right direction. Incidentally, on the day of the bust, the House approved a budget amendment which will:

  • expand the definition of dealer to include commercial dog breeders who have 10 or more female dogs;
  • exempts breeders of hunting dogs;
  • shifts the state’s animal welfare section from the state Department of Agriculture to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

If you live in any of the above mentioned places, please show your support for the bans.

 

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About The Paw Report

I graduated from St. John's University School of Law in 2012, and am admitted to practice law in New York State. I was a member of the New York City Bar Association's Animal Law Committee for three years. I was born and raised in Rhode Island, but moved to New Mexico when I was 18. After dabbling in film for two years, I graduated from the University of New Mexico with a degree in Anthropology. I've been living in New York City since 2008, and currently reside in Brooklyn with my boyfriend and our two cats. I am a former organizer with Direct Action Everywhere - New York City.

Discussion

One thought on “Anti-Puppy Mill Legislation News & Updates

  1. Wonderful!! Adopt. Don’t breed.

    >

    Like

    Posted by Roy Sexton (Reel Roy Reviews) | June 23, 2014, 6:22 pm

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