The AKC Government Relations Department (AKC GR) assists dog owners with canine legislation issues in their local communities, but we can’t help unless we are aware of the proposal! If you hear of an issue in your city or county, please contact us at (919) 816-3720 or firstname.lastname@example.org
. We will be happy to provide you with the resources, tools and support you need to help support and defend responsible dog ownership in your community.
Here are some examples of the local issues currently being addressed by AKC GR.
Canyon Lake, CA
— The Canyon Lake City Council has rejected a proposed mandatory spay/neuter ordinance, but it is likely to return to the council once a new interim city manager is appointed. The ordinance would have required the sterilization of any animal that did not qualify for specified exemptions provided for competition animals, animals in training for competition, military, law enforcement, service, guide or signal dogs or those with medical conditions which make sterilization problematic. AKC GR sent a letter of opposition to the city council outlining the ineffectiveness of mandatory spay/neuter ordinances.
Chino Valley, AZ
— The Chino Valley Town Council has returned to committee a proposal that would have enacted numerous problematic changes to the town's animal control laws. Provisions of concern included a requirement for a kennel permit, business license, and inspections for properties on which more than six dogs over the age of six months are permanently maintained; allowance for seizure and euthanasia on suspicion of neglect; and overly-broad "dangerous animal" provisions. AKC GR sent a letter of concern and alerted local dog owners. AKC GR and local club members will continue to monitor this issue.
Los Angeles, CA
— The Los Angeles Department of Animal Services has submitted a report to the city council which recommends several changes to the city's breeding permits and spay/neuter ordinance. Changes include requiring sterilization on a second impoundment even if the animal has an intact license, removing the exemption for animals that have acquired a title or are being trained for conformation, companion or performance events and requiring that those seeking exemptions for show or competition animals provide verified proof of competition. Finally, the proposal would require those who have a breeding permit to be "subject to inspection by the Los Angeles Department of Animal Services at its sole discretion." It is unknown what the city council will do with this report. AKC staff will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates if an ordinance is prepared and set for hearing.
— The Menifee City Council has tasked an ad-hoc committee of two councilmembers to review language for a possible ordinance to ban the sale of dogs and cats in the city. It is unknown how this might affect local breeders. AKC GR staff is continuing to monitor the issue.
St. Joseph, MO
— The St. Joseph City Council will convene a work session to consider amending kennel regulations passed in 2011. The 2011 kennel regulations require licensing and inspections for boarding, rescue, and breeding kennels, which includes anyone who keeps more than four intact females over 6 months of age for sale, breeding or "exhibition purposes." They also allow a kennel owner to choose whether to have a state inspector, city official, or a veterinarian of the owner's choice perform the inspection. City Animal Control has asked that only city inspectors be allowed to conduct inspections or that all inspectors be required to comply with specific city criteria regarding completing and filing reports. AKC GR is working with its Missouri federation to address concerns with these amendments and the underlying law.
— The Manasquan Borough Council defeated a proposal to ban dog breeding after determining that certain language in the draft might have created unintended consequences for private breeders. A new draft of the proposal is expected to be introduced at the September 4th meeting and is expected to protect dog and cat breeding in private homes and kennels. AKC GR and the New Jersey Federation of Dog Clubs continue to provide information to the council. Read more about this issue.
— The Ovid Town Board is considering an 18-month moratorium on new and expanded commercial boarding or training kennels and on "pet breeders." A "pet breeder" is defined as a property on which three or more dogs or cats at any one time are bred or sold; more than two litters are sold or given away in a 12-month period, or a female dog or cat is bred more than once in any 12-month period and the offspring are sold or given away. Veterinarians and humane organizations would be exempted. AKC GR sent a letter of concern to the Board and alerted its New York federation.
— The Lenoir City Council approved a measure on August 21 that would define "high volume animal breeder" as one who maintains 6 or more adult female animals "for breeding purposes." An adult female dog is defined as one over 12 months of age. Vague exemptions are provided for anyone who can provide "verifiable documentation" that their animals are used for show, hunting, service, performance, or therapy, or are part of adoption/rescue services. Documentation may include show premiums, copies of show entries, proof of AKC or UKC registration, or copies of payment transactions for any activity that qualifies as an exemption. Those who would be considered a "high volume animal breeder" under this proposal are required to obtain a license, be subject to an unannounced inspection at least once per year, and comply with general care standards. Many of the amendments and concerns raised by the AKC were addressed, including removing a clause that would only allow breeders to operate in areas zoned for business or industrial use.
— The Waterloo Town Board is expected to vote at the August 27th meeting on an ordinance that would establish a one year moratorium on the approval of new kennels or pet breeders. The measure defines a kennel as any residence where three or more dogs or cats not owned by the property owner are trained or boarded for commercial purposes. It defines a pet breeder as any lot on which: at least three dogs or cats at any one time are bred or sold for commercial purposes, there is at any time more than three adult dogs and one litter of pups under the age of four months, where any adult dog or cat is bred more than once in a twelve month period, or where more than two litters of pups or kittens are sold or given away in a twelve month period. AKC GR alerted local residents and encouraged them to attend the town board meeting.
Breed-Specific Legislation/Dangerous Dog Measures
— Marianna commissioners will appoint a citizen's committee to make recommendations regarding a dangerous dog ordinance. AKC GR sent information in support of fair measures that do not discriminate against owners of specific breeds and will continue to offer assistance to the committee.
Miami-Dade County, FL
— A ballot measure to repeal a breed-specific ban in Miami-Dade County did not pass on August 14. Therefore, a county ordinance that prohibits owning or keeping American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, or any other dog that substantially conforms to any of these breeds' characteristics will remain in force.
— Hinesville city council members have determined that revisions to the city's animal control ordinance will not include breed-specific provisions. AKC GR sent a letter and information in support of measures that do not discriminate against owners of specific breeds. AKC GR and its Georgia federation continue to offer assistance in crafting a fair and reasonable dangerous dog ordinance.
Breaux Bridge, LA
— A recent media report
indicated that the Breaux Bridge City Council may discuss a breed ban at its upcoming meeting. AKC GR has contacted Mayor Jack Delhomme and the members of the City Council to express the importance of breed-neutral dangerous dog law. AKC GR will continue to monitor developments in Breaux Bridge.
York County, SC
— The York County Council is moving forward on revisions to the county animal ordinance. Dog confinement requirements, tethering restrictions, and breed-specific restrictions are among the provisions under consideration. New definitions for "adequate shelter, "at large," "public nuisance," "ill treatment of animals" and other terms may also be considered. AKC GR alerted local dog owners and continues to monitor this issue.
Franklin Lakes, NJ
— AKC GR has learned that the Franklin Lakes Board of Health has recommended that the Mayor and Council duly consider placing limits on the number of pets that can be legally kept at any single residence. AKC GR continues to work with the New Jersey Federation of Dog Clubs on this issue, and will respond once a proposal is introduced.
— The Kewaunee Common Council has tabled a 3-pet limit on all residents. This would have included banning all "kennels" (defined more than three intact dogs or cats over 6 months of age), and prohibiting the ownership of more than three mammals, reptiles or birds. The proposal also stated that the city may declare any number of animals "determined to be detrimental to the healthful and comfortable life of that person, family or neighborhood" as a public nuisance. AKC GR notified local clubs and breeders sent a letter of opposition to the council.