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AKC Government Relations continues to monitor Congress for issues of interest to dog owners.

Visit our 2023 Legislation Tracking map and click on “Federal Bills” on the map to get the latest updates on federal bills currently being monitored by the AKC. Highlights of issues we are currently addressing on the federal level include:

 U.S. Congress – AKC GR expects that the “Puppy Protection Act,” which was introduced in the last Congress  will be  re-introduced in early 2023. As introduced in 2021, this highly problematic measure would establish a number of new, arbitrary, one-size-fits-all requirements for USDA-licensed dog breeders. (Generally, these are pet breeders who maintain more than 4 intact females and transfer one or more pets sight unseen).  Requirements include mandated pre-breeding veterinary approvals; mandated primary enclosure height such that a dog can stand on its hind legs and not touch the enclosure roof; mandated feeding twice daily; unrestricted access from primary enclosure to outdoor exercise yards large enough to achieve full stride; specific mental stimulation and socialization; prohibitions on the number of litters bred; and prohibitions on breeding age. In the last session, proponents secured a large number of sponsorships on the measure in past sessions.   AKC is actively working to educate about the unintended consequences associated with the arbitrary requirements in this measure.

 U.S. Congress – The Healthy Dog Importation Act would require owners/importers of all dogs imported into the United States to submit a valid health certificate from a veterinary agency recognized by the USDA. Certificates would demonstrate that dogs being imported are microchipped and fully vaccinated or protected against contagious diseases and pathogens of concern to the USDA, including rabies. Dogs and records would also be subject to inspection/verification upon entry. Unlike the current CDC temporary rule, this measure focuses specifically on individual health status rather than country of origin. AKC is actively advocating for the reintroduction and passage of this important measure.