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VA House Committee to Consider Debarking Ban on Monday (1/23)

(Thursday, January 19, 2012)

The American Kennel Club Government Relations Department has learned that the Virginia House Agriculture Subcommittee will consider House Bill 158 on Monday, January 23. This bill would add the practice of debarking to the Commonwealth’s animal cruelty laws, unless it is performed to treat or relieve an illness, disease or injury or to correct a congenital defect that is causing physical pain or harm.

The hearing information is as follows:
House Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources Committee, Agriculture Subcommittee
Date: Monday, January 23, 2012
Time: 5:00 p.m.
Location: 5th East Conference Room
General Assembly Building
1000 Bank St.
Richmond, VA
It is unknown at this time whether there will be an opportunity for public comment; however, members of the public may attend the hearing and respectfully state their concerns if the chairman allows comments on this issue.

Talking Points:

The AKC and its state federation, the Virginia Federation of Dog Clubs & Breeders, both oppose House Bill 158. When performed by a veterinarian, debarking is a viable veterinary procedure that may allow a dog to stay in a loving home, rather than be surrendered to a shelter where it will be housed and/or euthanized at the taxpayers’ expense.

Read AKC’s Policy Position Statement on Debarking

Read AKC’s Issue Analysis: Dispelling the Myths of Cropped Ears, Docked Tails, Dewclaws, and Debarking

AKC urges responsible dog owners in Virginia to contact the subcommittee and respectfully ask them to oppose House Bill 158. The contact information is as follows:

Delegate Daniel W. Marshall III (Chairman)
Phone: (804) 698-1014
Fax: (804) 698-6714
Email: DelDMarshall@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Matthew James
Phone: (804) 698-1080
Fax: (804) 698-6780
Email: DelMJames@house.virginia.gov

Delegate James W. (Will) Morefield
Phone: (804) 698-1003
Fax: (804) 698-6703
Email: DelJMorefield@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Robert D. Orrock, Sr.
Phone: (804) 698-1054
Fax: (804) 698-6754
Email: DelBOrrock@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Charles D. Poindexter
Phone: (804) 698-1009
Fax: (804) 698-6709
Email: DelCPoindexter@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Mark D. Sickles
Phone: (804) 698-1043
Fax: (804) 698-6743
Email: DelMSickles@house.virginia.gov