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Puppy Uniform Protection Statute (PUPS) Legislation Introduced in US Congress

(Thursday, September 25, 2008)

The Puppy Uniform Protection Statute (PUPS) has been concurrently introduced in the US House of Representatives last week as H.R. 6949 and in the Senate as S.3519. The legislation will require that any breeder who sells more than 50 dogs per year direct to the public through internet sales or other outlets be inspected and licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture. Current law requires breeders who sell at wholesale (to pet stores, research facilities etc.) and have more than 3 breeding females to be licensed and inspected by the USDA.

The legislation further mandates that licensed dealers provide each dog 12 weeks or older with a minimum of two exercise periods during each day for a total of not less than one hour of exercise. Specifically PUPS requires that each dog be removed from its primary enclosure for this exercise, assuming that the dog is kept in a crate - the bill does not make exceptions for animals that are housed in larger runs where they are able to exercise continuously.

The American Kennel Club was not involved in the drafting of this legislation, but we look forward to working with federal legislators to contribute language which ensures the health and welfare of our canine companions without infringing upon the rights of responsible dog breeders and responsible dog owners.

AKC would encourage Congress to recognize that the responsibility of a breeder cannot be judged by the number of dogs sold or owned, but rather solely on the quality of care provided to the animals. We encourage Congress to direct USDA to draft performance based regulations which ensure dogs are provided with proper care and humane treatment including an adequate and nutritious diet, clean water, clean living conditions, regular veterinary care, exercise and socialization opportunities and kind and responsive human companionship.

The AKC Government Relation staff will carefully monitor this legislation and will update our website as the legislation moves forward.

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