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Attention Louisville Dog Owners

(Friday, February 24, 2006)
The Louisville Metro Council Committee on Government Administration, Rules, Ethics, and Audit Agenda will meet at 4pm Monday, February 27th to discuss the proposed changes to the animal control ordinance. It is critical that fanciers and concerned dog owners contact their council members and ask them to oppose this measure. The American Kennel Club and the Louisville Kennel Club have sent letters of opposition to the metro council, but more help is needed. Participants are asked to arrive early as the Louisville Kennel Club will be providing attendees with red shirts to show solidarity in opposition to the provisions described below.

Proposed Louisville Animal Ordinance Endangers Dog Owners
February 6, 2006

Help is urgently needed! The Louisville Metro Council will soon consider changes to its animal control ordinance that impose a number of burdensome fees, expensive licenses, and punitive restrictions that will be harmful to all dog owners.

It is unclear what problems this disjointed proposal attempts to solve. In fact, the provisions of this ordinance will create significant problems for responsible dog owners committed to socializing their animals. The proposal provides that an intact male dog can only be walked by an adult, and prohibits the animal from contact with other humans and dogs. Incredibly, the measure further prohibits a female and her litter from having contact with humans other than the owner until four months of age! The recent draft contains many such examples of regulations that prevent dog owners from acting responsibly.

Additionally, this restrictive measure would:
  • Require an annual $57 license for each unaltered dog or cat over four months old.
  • Define anyone who sells or gives away an animal as an "animal dealer" and require purchase of both an animal dealer license and a kennel license.
  • Require persons with more than 5 altered animals to purchase a kennel license.
  • Further require purchase of a kennel license by residents with less than 5 animals if they breed, show, or compete in field or obedience trials.
  • Establish a $5 "show dog" fee for every dog participating in conformation that can not show proof of license in another jurisdiction.
  • Specify that an animal may not be deemed dangerous solely because it bites or attacks.
In applying for any animal dealer or kennel license, dog owners would be forced to comply with a long list of provisions, including submitting to property and record-keeping inspections. Breeders would also be required to report all sales and provide license tags to new owners.

As dog owners may recall, in late 2005, Councilwoman Cheri Bryant Hamilton introduced a breed-specific proposal targeting Rottweilers and "pit bulls," defined as Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, American Pit Bull Terriers, or any dog which has the appearance and characteristics of these breeds. While AKC applauds the council's decision to pursue strong dangerous dog and animal control legislation in lieu of a breed-specific ordinance, this proposal does nothing to address irresponsible ownership, makes it harder to declare a dog dangerous and places severe burdens on responsible dog owners.

What You Can Do:
  • Contact your local Metro Councilmember and ask him or her to oppose this measure. To find out who represents you on the Metro Council, click here. It is critical that officials hear from their own constituents!

    Louisville Metro Hall
    527 West Jefferson Street
    Louisville, Kentucky 40202
    502.574.2003
For more information, contact:

Louisville Kennel Club
Donnaherzig@aol.com

AKC's Canine Legislation department
919-816-3720, doglaw@akc.org