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NH Update: Senate Committee to Consider Ownership Limits and Breeding Restrictions on Thurs. (1/19)

(Tuesday, January 17, 2012)

New Hampshire Senate Bill 370, which seeks to impose ownership limits and other restrictions on responsible dog breeders and owners, will be considered by the Senate Executive Departments and Administration Committee on Thursday, January 19, 2012.

It is imperative that all responsible dog breeders and owners in New Hampshire consider attending Thursday’s hearing or contact the committee and respectfully urge them to not support the bill as currently written. Scroll down for details on the committee hearing and contact information.

SUMMARY

The American Kennel Club and our New Hampshire federation, the Dog Owners of the Granite State, both oppose this measure as it is currently written.

AKC’s concerns include:

  • Limiting any person from owning more than 50 intact dogs over the age of six months for the purpose of breeding those animals and selling any offspring for use as a pet. The AKC opposes laws that limit the number of dogs a responsible owner may own as well as unreasonable limitations on pet ownership. Numerical limits do not address underlying issues of irresponsible ownership and/or improper dog care.
  • Requiring any person having more than 10 female dogs covered by the statute to provide specific care and conditions requirements. This includes limits on the frequency of breeding females. Such limitations are arbitrary, do not take into consideration health considerations of a dog, and effectively put the state in charge of issues that are best left to the specialized expertise of veterinary health care providers. A better alternative is to remove this limitation, which will help ensure that individual health care decisions are made by the dog’s owner and its veterinarian.
  • Mandating that all tail docking be done by a licensed veterinarian and with anesthesia. The bill defines “tail docking” as the docking, cutting off, causing, or procuring the docking or cutting off of the tail of a dog over five days old. However, a six-day old puppy would not be able to endure the anesthesia required by this bill. A better alternative is to leave decisions regarding the best care of a dog to its owner in consultation with the treating veterinarian.
  • Authorizing any duly-appointed agent of a humane society, SPCA incorporated in New Hampshire, or animal control officer to investigate possible violations on the Agriculture Commissioner’s initiative or pursuant to complaints. This may effectively deputize individuals not trained or sworn in as public officers, and allow them to enter and seize private property.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

  • Attend the Senate Executive Departments and Administrative Committee meeting on Thursday, January 19, and respectfully ask the committee to oppose SB 370 as currently written.

    Hearing Information:
    Thursday, January 19, 2012
    10:45AM
    Room 100
    State House
    107 North Main Street
    Concord, New Hampshire 03301

For more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org or the AKC’s New Hampshire Federation, Dog Owners of the Granite State nhdogs@gmail.com.