Taking Command
May 2014
New in the GR Toolbox: New “Deed Not Breed” Flyer and Updated Position Statement on Breeding Regulations and Restrictions
2014-0529-tc-flyer.jpgAKC GR is pleased to announce two additions to the online AKC Government Relations Toolbox: a new “Deed Not Breed” flyer and an updated AKC position statement on Breeding Regulations and Restrictions.

This compelling new flyer, which features a Staffordshire Bull Terrier, makes a strong statement against breed-specific legislation and communicates AKC’s position that dogs should be judged by their deeds, not their breed.

A recently-revised AKC Canine Legislation Position Statement on Breeding Regulations and Restrictions more clearly expresses the AKC’s opposition to regulating individuals as “breeders” based solely on the number of dogs they own. It further states AKC’s expectation that responsible dog owners should know, understand, and obey the laws that apply to them.

AKC’s position statements are reviewed and updated on an ongoing basis by the Board of Directors and serve as the foundation for AKC’s positions on legislation and other public policy initiatives. All AKC Position Statements can be viewed in the AKC Government Relations Toolbox, or you can click here for a summary.

Be sure to visit the AKC GR Toolbox often for a wide variety of materials you can download and print for community and dog-related events, club meetings, legislative battles, and to help educate others about the importance of promoting and protecting responsible dog ownership and breeding.
More from the AKC Dog Lover’s Blog

AKC Dog Lovers, the official blog of the AKC, is a great source of news, stories, and information from the American Kennel Club. Some recent blog posts from the AKC Government Relations team are featured below.

New “Pet Shop” Legislation Sets Dangerous Precedent in Restricting Pet Ownership
Over the last year, AKC Government Relations has seen a rapid increase in the number of bills designed to restrict the sales of pets. Most are being introduced at the local level —and nearly all are packaged as “anti-puppy mill” or  “anti-pet shop” measures.

Sounds good, right?

Wrong. Most of these measures are offered in cities where there are few local breeders, and almost all of the bills restrict how future pet owners can acquire a pet. They limit the ability of pet owners to acquire an appropriate pet of their choice, fail to distinguish between hobby and commercial breeders or breeders and pet shops, and limit the ability of purchasers to take advantage of regulated sources of purpose-bred pets covered by consumer protection laws. Read more.

This article appeared in the AKC Dog Lovers blog on May 16, 2014.

Building Consensus in a Hostile Urban Area
You might be surprised to hear that one of the most successful local breeder organizations in the country can be found in Los Angeles County, California. Beyond the famous urban center of Los Angeles lie thousands of acres of farmland including approximately 150 boarding, showing, and breeding kennels.

The Southern California Kennel Owners and Breeders Association (SCKOBA) was initially formed in the face of a proposal from animal control that would have negatively impacted the kennels in the area. The group has expanded both their membership and their mission over the years. They have developed a strong working relationship with animal control and now with other agencies in the county. Read more.

This article appeared in the AKC Dog Lovers blog on May 2, 2014.

After Two Years of Limbo, Victory for Maryland Dogs
Dogs in Maryland won a victory earlier this month when Tracey v. Solesky, a disastrous court ruling enacted in 2012, was finally overturned.

The original ruling, issued in April 2012, declared all “pit bulls” as inherently dangerous and held landlords liable for any actions caused by “pit bulls” on their property. On reconsideration in August 2012, a Maryland Court of Appeals stated that the ruling did not apply to mixed breeds, but only “purebred pit bulls”.

Both the original ruling and the “clarification” created huge problems for “bully”-type dogs in Maryland and their owners. Read more.

This article appeared in the AKC Dog Lovers blog on April 25, 2014.

Be Your Dog’s Best Friend and a Good Neighbor
Dog limit laws. Breed bans. “No Dogs Allowed” signs at parks, lakes, and trails. Have you ever considered what prompts such restrictions?

Often, laws and regulations that impact all dog owners are enacted in response to problems created by a handful of irresponsible owners and nuisance dogs. This is one of the reasons that AKC expects all dog owners to be good neighbors and to know, understand and obey laws or rules that pertain to them. Read more.

This article appeared in the AKC Dog Lovers blog on April 17, 2014.

It Pays to Support AKC Dog Shows
There is no question that dogs have a positive impact on our lives, and as noted in last week’s blog post, participating or attending a dog show is a great way to learn about the right breed of dog for your family and the joys and responsibilities of dog ownership.

But have you ever considered that there are even more far-reaching benefits of supporting responsible dog owners and local dog events? Dog shows and responsible dog ownership have a ripple effect that benefits a community’s residents, local businesses, and overall economy. Read more.

This article appeared in the AKC Dog Lovers blog on April 4, 2014.

Legislative Information and Updates
More than a thousand dog-related laws are introduced each year at the federal, state, and local levels — measures that may have significant impact on dog owners. Click on the links below to view highlights of issues being tracked by AKC Government Relations.

Federal — issues that may affect all dog owners in the US
State — issues specific to your state
Local — issues at the city and county levels

Please contact us at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org for more information or to let us know what’s happening in your local community.
2014 Legislative Successes
The AKC Government Relations Department is pleased to partner with state federations, dog clubs and concerned owners to protect the rights of dog owners. The tireless response of responsible breeders, owners and fanciers across the country truly makes a difference! Visit the 2014 Legislative Successes page to view examples of recent results of their good work.
Meet the AKC GR Team — Sarah Sprouse
This month we highlight Sarah Sprouse. As Legislative Analyst for the Government Relations team, Sarah works to coordinate AKC’s efforts with those of local concerned fanciers, responsible dog owners, and breeders to effectively address legislation at the state and local levels.

Click here to learn more about Sarah and other members of the AKC GR team.
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