Pet Animal Welfare Statute of 2005 Sponsors and AKC Cooperate to Exempt Qualified Breeders
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-- AKC Chairman Testifies Before Senate Subcommittee On PAWS --
New York, NY — The American Kennel Club (AKC ® ), working in cooperation with Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) and other co-sponsors of the Pet Animal Welfare Statute of 2005 (PAWS), today testified in support of PAWS as it will be modified by additions and clarifications described by Sen. Santorum at the opening of the hearing. These modifications include an additional exemption for breeders who sell dogs or cats only at retail and are in compliance with certified kennel inspection standards. Dealers will also have the option of a third-party compliance inspection.
At a hearing held by the Subcommittee on Research, Nutrition and General Legislation of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, AKC Chairman Ronald Menaker spoke in support of PAWS, including the additional exemption provision, and how the bill aims to regulate imported puppy sales and high volume breeders who sell dogs over the internet.
"We are delighted by this additional provision and proud that our input to the Senator throughout the legislative process is resulting in an extremely effective bill that can be supported by a range of animal-interest organizations," said Menaker.
The most recent additional provision and clarifying language to PAWS will ensure that you will be exempt if you:
- Sell not more than 25 dogs to the public, or
- Sell the dogs from six or fewer litters, or
- Sell more than the threshold numbers, but comply with kennel inspection standards of not-for-profit organizations, such as the AKC, as certified by the Secretary of Agriculture.
- Are an animal shelter, rescue organization, or individual working with dogs as long as you do not import dogs for resale or operate for profit.
The additional exemption for those in compliance with standards of not-for-profit organizations, such as the AKC, whose kennel inspection programs and standards are certified by the Secretary of Agriculture would apply to persons selling dogs and cats solely at retail. The kennel standards certified by the Secretary must be at least equivalent to those required by the United States Department of Agriculture under the Animal Welfare Act. This new provision will permit the USDA to focus its inspection activities on currently unregulated high volume breeders and brokers without imposing federal regulation on hobby and show breeders already in compliance with equivalent or higher standards.