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Strict Ohio Breeder Bill to be Heard on Tuesday, October 6

(Tuesday, October 06, 2009)

The Ohio Senate State & Local Government and Veterans Affairs Committee will allow supporters of Senate Bill 95 to testify in a hearing on October 6. Opponents of the measure will be given an opportunity to speak at a later hearing. All concerned dog owners and breeders in Ohio are encouraged to contact the committee, as well as their State Senator, to express any concerns or feedback they have on this bill.

The AKC is concerned with many provisions in Senate Bill 95 as introduced, including, but not limited to:

  • Broad definition of "Regulated Dog Intermediary". Anyone who sells, exchanges, donates, or gives away at least nine dogs a year or sells or gives one dog to a pet store is subject to a $500 annual license fee. This definition also does not exclude breeders, and it is unclear if those who acquire a dog breeding kennel license must also obtain a regulated dog intermediary license.
  • Arbitrary, unenforceable kennel requirements and standards of care. The detailed requirements outlined in this bill are nearly impossible to enforce and do not account for the varying needs of different dog breeds or the enormous costs these new standards would impose on responsible breeders.
  • Little breeder representation within Kennel Control Authority Board. Besides one member "in good standing of a national breed parent club of the American Kennel Club", breeders have no representation on the board that will set the standards of care, oversee licensing, and conduct inspections. While the AKC appreciates that parent clubs are being recognized for their expertise, breeders should have more than one representative on a board regulating dog breeding in Ohio.

In addition, the bill creates a new board to oversee implementation and inspections, which the Ohio Legislative Service Commission reports will likely cost the state hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on the amount the state receives in license fees. The Commission acknowledges that the number of dog kennels in Ohio requiring licensing under this bill is unknown, so they cannot accurately project the amount of revenue the fees will generate for the state.

The American Kennel Club (AKC®) believes dog owners bear a special responsibility to provide proper care and humane treatment to their canine companions at all times and abhors all forms of animal cruelty. We also believe, however, that any bill seeking to protect the health and welfare of dogs should be reasonable, enforceable, and not infringe on the rights of breeders who take their responsibilities seriously.

How You Can Help

  • Contact your Ohio State Senator and respectfully communicate your concerns and feedback regarding Senate Bill 95. To find the names of your legislators and their contact information, call (800) 282-0253 or type in your zip code at www.legislature.state.oh.us.
  • Contact the members of the Senate State & Local Government and Veterans’ Affairs Committee and respectfully communicate any concerns and feedback you have regarding this bill. Remember– the October 6 hearing is for supporters only. The Chairman’s office has assured the AKC that a hearing for opponents of the bill will also be scheduled.

The committee's contact information is as follows:
Senator Jim Hughes (Chair and Bill Sponsor)
Senate Building
Room #038, Ground Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-5981
Email: SD16@senate.state.oh.us

Senator Jimmy Stewart (Vice-Chair)
Senate Building
Room #040, Ground Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-8076
Email: SD20@senate.state.oh.us

Senator Teresa Fedor (Ranking Minority Member)
Statehouse
Room #051, Ground Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-5204
Email: SD11@maild.sen.state.oh.us

Senator John Carey
Senate Building
Room #127, First Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-8156
Email: SD17@senate.state.oh.us

Senator Timothy Grendell
Senate Building
Room #042, Ground Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 644-7718
E-mail: SD18@senate.state.oh.us

Senator Ray Miller
Senate Building
Room #228, Second Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-5131
E-mail: rmiller@maild.sen.state.oh.us

Senator Bill Seitz
Senate Building
Room #143, First Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-8068
Email: SD08@senate.state.oh.us

Senator Nina Turner
Senate Building
Room #226, Second Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-4583
Email: senatorturner@maild.sen.state.oh.us

Senator Mark Wagoner
Senate Building
Room #129, First Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 466-8060
Email: SD02@senate.state.oh.us

For more information, contact AKC's Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720, or e-mail doglaw@akc.org.