State Issues: News from the State Capitols
Here are some highlights of state-level issues AKC GR is currently tracking. Visit the 2018 Legislation Tracking page and click on your state to get the latest updates on state bills monitored by the AKC.
Alabama – SB 232, among numerous other provisions, establishes procedures by which a dog can be declared dangerous and may require the euthanization of a dog that causes serious injury or death to a human. It imposes criminal penalties on the owner of a dog that attacks or injures a human if the owner had prior knowledge of and demonstrated reckless disregard of the undefined “dangerous propensities” of the dog. It also provides for impoundment of a dog based on a sworn complaint if an investigator believes the allegation that a dog is dangerous. SB 232 was signed by the governor and becomes effective June 1, 2018.
California – Assembly Bill 1762 — would allow visitors to all California state parks to bring animals when they visit the parks. Animals would be permitted in the parks and recreational areas within the parks, including hiking trails, unless the animal’s presence causes a threat to health and safety, public nuisance or a threat to natural or cultural resources or improvements in the park. The bill was amended and referred to the Committee on Water, Parks and Wildlife. AKC GR is monitoring the legislation.
California – Assembly Bill 1776 — This bill authorizes specified emergency medical personnel to transport a police dog injured in the line of duty to an appropriate veterinary care facility. The bill also includes search and rescue dogs, passive alert dogs, and service dogs in its definition of injured dogs that can be transported. The bill also removed most civil liabilities from both emergency medical personnel and their agencies for harm incurred during transport. The bill has been referred to committee and is awaiting a hearing, and AKC GR is monitoring the legislation.
California – Assembly Bill 1780 would require the State Public Health Officer to investigate reports of outbreaks of communicable diseases caused by, or purported to be caused by, contact with dogs or cats that have been imported from out of state. It authorizes the officer to prohibit the importation of animals that pose a risk of any communicable disease. The bill would impose a civil penalty for violators. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, and AKC GR will support this bill.
California – Assembly Bill 2362 would establish health and safety standards for mobile dog and cat transportation facilities by requiring transporters to meet certain conditions as to heating, cooling, ventilation and lighting in their transportation facilities. The bill would be applicable to public animal control agencies or shelters, societies for the prevention of cruelty to animal shelters, humane society shelters, or rescue groups that work with at least one private or public shelter, and to a public or private for-profit entity that uses mobile or traveling housing facilities for dogs and cats. AKC GR will support this bill.
California – Senate Bill 911 will increase the penalties for intentionally injuring a law enforcement dog or horse. The bill is set for committee hearing in early April. AKC will submit a letter of support.
California — After a 22-month process, the California Fish and Game Commission unanimously voted on Dec. 6, 2017, to amend state code by deleting language that prohibits the use of global positioning system (GPS) collars and treeing switches on dogs used to hunt pigs and deer. The commission initially moved to amend the code in April 2016, but delayed that move after opponents filed a lawsuit contending the proposed code changes violated California environmental law. The commission and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife both determined the changes would have little effect on the environment. The new regulations will take effect in April 2018.
Colorado – HB 18-1126 would prohibit homeowners associations from prohibiting residents from keeping dogs based solely on the dog’s breed, weight, or size. However, the bill did allow HOAs to regulate the number of dogs each residence may keep. Thanks to the work of the Colorado federation, the portion limiting dog ownership was removed. The bill ultimately failed on the House floor, but the federation and AKC are committed to working with HOAs to address concerns and bring forward positive legislation in the future.
Florida – HB 153/SB 132, would recognize the reduction of shelter populations, extend regulations to additional rescue entities, prohibit the importation of shelter animals into the state, and provide penalties which requiring violators to be regulated as pet shops and pet dealers. Both bills died in committee.
Florida – HB 249/SB 1356 would prohibit an animal shelter from euthanizing an animal if a rescue organization has indicated it will take custody of the animal, with certain exceptions. Both bills died in committee.
Florida – HB 763/SB 982 would establish within the Department of Law Enforcement a fund to provide funds for up to $1500 a year for veterinary care for a retired law enforcement dog, require the department to contract with a not for profit organization to administer the program; and appropriate $300,000 in funds per year. Both bills died in committee.
Florida – HB 907/SB 1376 would prohibit certain persons from leaving a domestic companion animal or service animal outdoors and unattended when an area is under an evacuation order and would specify requirements for securing an animal if it cannot be evacuated with the owner. Both bills died in committee.
Florida – HB 1257/SB 1488 would provide that a person who is found liable for negligently, recklessly, indifferently, or intentionally causing serious injury to or the death of a domestic companion animal, police animal, or service animal is accountable to the owner of such animal for damages including, but not limited to, monetary or replacement value of the animal; veterinary expenses incurred in treating the animal; reimbursement of animal training expenses, including, but not limited to, the cost of any specialized training for police animals and service animals; burial or cremation expenses; loss of breeding potential of the animal; loss of companionship; and punitive damages if the person is found liable for recklessly, indifferently, or intentionally causing the serious injury to or death of the animal. Both bills died in committee.
Florida – HB 1433 would provide that a positive test result for anabolic steroids in a racing greyhound following a race is a violation, with certain exceptions; require the Division of Pari-mutuel Wagering to adopt rules for greyhound safety, health, specific feeding and welfare requirements; and preempt the regulation of racing greyhounds to the state. HB 1433 died in committee.
Florida – HB 1443/SB 1006, among other provisions, would direct the Division of Emergency Management to include specified persons in state emergency management plans and public awareness programs, define “comfort animals”, authorize certain persons to bring a service animal or comfort animal to a special needs shelter, and require the development of informational materials regarding the acceptance of pets, service animals, and comfort animals at shelters. Both bills died in committee.
Florida – SB 86 would establish a vague definition of “hoarding”, prohibit animal hoarding, require the court to order seizure of animal upon probable cause that hoarding is occurring, and categorize animal hoarding as felony third degree animal cruelty. SB 86 died in committee.
Florida – SB 1576 requires certain sheltering organizations to establish procedures to ensure that every reasonable effort is made to quickly and reliably return lost and strayed animals to their owners, authorizes a court to prohibit certain offenders from owning or having contact with animals, and revises penalties. SB 1576 was signed by the governor and became Chapter 2018-87 on 3/26/18.
Georgia – HR 638, a resolution commending the benefits and contributions of purebred dogs to the State of Georgia and recognizing May 1 as Georgia Purebred Dog Day at the state capitol; and for other purposes, was adopted by the Senate.
Hawaii –House Bill 1823 seeks to create a misdemeanor for those found to have knowingly misrepresent themselves, through conduct or verbal or written notice, as being disabled in an attempt to receive the benefits and protections afforded under federal or State law for the use of service dog or emotional support animal. The House Health and Human Services Committee deferred consideration of the bill.
Idaho – Senate 1312 would increase penalties for any person who purposely injures or harasses a service dog or a service dog in training, or allows an animal to injure the service dog. The bill also defines what constitutes a service dog and what does not. The bill has been referred to committee.
Illinois – House Bill 4191 / Senate Bill 2277 would allow private citizens to remove dogs from cars if the person believes that the dog is imminent danger in a locked car. AKC GR and its Illinois Federation proposed amendments to address remaining concerns with these bills. HB 4191 is scheduled to be heard in the Tort Liability Law Subcommittee on April 10.
Illinois – House Bill 4380 states that no animal may be kept outside in temperatures below 20 degrees or above 100 degrees Fahrenheit for any reason. AKC is concerned that this could restrict those who may participate in humane winter activities with their dogs. Illinois law already states that a dog may not be left outside in life-threatening conditions of extreme heat or cold, making this bill unnecessary. The bill is pending in the House Executive Committee.
Illinois – House Bill 5807 would prohibit pet stores from selling animals unless the animals are sourced from a shelter or rescue organization. AKC is opposing this bill, which removes consumer protection and limits consumer choice. In 2017, the Illinois General Assembly passed the Safe Pets Act, which regulates pet stores and ensures that dogs being sold in pet stores are being raised in a humane manner, making this bill unnecessary. The bill is pending in the Rules Committee.
Illinois – Senate Bill 2601 states that an approved humane investigator may not be held liable for any act or omission that occurs during an investigation unless there is willful or wanton misconduct. The Illinois federation has expressed concerns with this bill, which was considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee on February 20.
Iowa – HF 2001 provides circumstances where a landlord may require a person with a disability to remove the person’s service or assistance animal from the premises. AKC is supporting the portion of the bill that makes it a misdemeanor to knowingly misrepresent an animal as a service or assistance animals by creating a false document, falsely stating the animal is a service or assistance animal, and fitting the animal with a service dog vest/sign/harness when it is not a service animal. The bill was amended in subcommittee and is pending in the House Commerce Committee.
Louisiana – House Bill 121 seeks to limit tethering of dogs. HB 121 was passed with amendments in the House Committee on Administration of Criminal Justice.
Louisiana – Senate Bill 156 seeks to provide immunity to persons who damage a vehicle to provide care to a minor or a domestic animal “in distress”, subject to certain requirements and restrictions. “In distress” means any condition that endangers the health or wellbeing of a minor or animal due to heat, cold, lack of adequate ventilation, lack of water or food, or any other circumstances that could reasonably be expected to cause suffering, disability, or death. SB 156 has passed in the Senate Committee on Judiciary A.
Maryland –House Bill 1662, titled the “No More Puppy Mill Pups Act of 2018,” would prohibit pet stores from selling dogs or cats, unless they are from an animal welfare organization or animal control unit. AKC is opposing this bill and is proposing a more effective and positive alternative. The bill passed the House and will be considered by the Senate Finance Committee on March 29. Read AKC’s alert for more information.
Massachusetts — Senate Bill 2331 (formerly Senate Bill 1155) seeks to expand restrictions on dog breeders, establish fines for anyone who fails to license their kennel or require them to relinquish ownership of their dogs, and empower the Department of Agricultural Resources to create regulations for those who own eight intact female dogs. The AKC has strong concerns about the bill and joined local dog owners and other organizations in testifying in opposition to these bills. SB 2331 was passed by the Massachusetts Senate on March 15, but is yet to be referred to a House committee. Read AKC’s legislative alert for more information on these bills.
Massachusetts— House Bill 1080/ Senate Bill 1155 seek to expand restrictions on dog breeders, establish fines for anyone who fails to license their kennel or require them to relinquish ownership of their dogs, and empower the Department of Agricultural Resources to create regulations for those who own eight intact female dogs. The AKC has strong concerns about the bill and joined local dog owners and other organizations in testifying in opposition to these bills. HB1080 was retained by the committee. SB 1155 was reported and has been further assigned to the Senate Ways and Means Committee.
Massachusetts –Senate Bill 2332 (formerly Senate Bill 1159) feature many provisions, including increases in fines for violations of dog control laws and licensing and sales requirements. They also contain provisions that restrict insurance companies canceling or covering based on the breed of dog kept on the insured premises. SB 2332 has passed the Senate, and awaits committee assignment in the House.
Massachusetts – House Bill 2419/Senate Bill 1159 feature many provisions, including increases in fines for violations of dog control laws and licensing and sales requirements. They also contain provisions that restrict insurance companies canceling or covering based on the breed of dog kept on the insured premises. Both bills have passed a first committee and are pending in a second.
Massachusetts – House Bill 3212 seeks to create consumer protections for pet store purchasers, mandates extensive shelter record keeping requirements, and prohibits local pet store sales bans. AKC GR testified in support of this bill, which is currently under the cognizance of the House Ways and Means Committee.
Michigan –Senate Bill 741 would prohibit local governments from enacting or enforcing policies that regulate dogs based upon its breed or perceived breed. AKC supports this bill, which was considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee on February 20. Read more about this legislation.
Minnesota – House File 2815, House File 3157, and Senate File 3157 all seek to prohibit the misrepresentation of an animal as a service animal. The AKC expressed support of these bills prior to their respective committee hearings on March 7 and March 8.
Mississippi – SB 2474 would require the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation to post a publicly accessible list on its website of any person convicted of an animal abuse offense on or after January 1, 2019. This bill has passed in the Senate Judiciary, Division B Committee.
Mississippi – HB 386 and similar bill SB 2091 would authorize emergency medical technicians to transport law enforcement dogs injured in the line of duty to a veterinarian. HB 386 has been referred to the House Judiciary B Committee. SB 2091 has been referred to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee.
Mississippi – SB 2172 would establish a first offense felony of aggravated abuse of a dog or cat, increase penalties, limit the number of counts that can be charged from a single incident, and establish reporting requirements. SB 2172 has been referred to the Senate Agriculture Committee.
Mississippi – SB 2185 would require a license from the Commissioner of Agriculture to operate as a pet dealer, kennel, stable, or animal shelter; establish annual fees of between $50 and $400 dollars; provide for inspections; and provide for the promulgation of rules and regulations. SB 2185 has been referred to the Senate Agriculture Committee.
Mississippi – SB 2232 would revise definitions in the Protection from Domestic Abuse Act and authorize a court to include the protection of pets in protection orders. SB 2232 has been referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Missouri –House Bill 1398 would prohibit municipalities from enacting breed-specific laws, and nullify any current breed-specific laws in the state. AKC GR supports this bill, which has passed the House Local Government Committee.
Missouri – House Bill 1945 amends the law regarding the care of animals seized when cruelty or neglect is suspected. AKC supports this bill, on which MoFed has been very active. It passed the House and is pending in the Senate Agriculture, Food Production and Outdoor Resources Committee.
Missouri – House Bill 2031 creates penalties for those who would misrepresent a service dog. AKC supports this bill as currently written, which is pending on the House floor.
Nebraska –Legislative Bill 893 as introduced, would have allowed pet stores to sell only animals obtained from an animal control facility, animal shelter, or animal rescue. AKC GR worked local breeders to express concerns. The bill has been amended to simply require that pet stores place a sign on each case providing the contact information of where the animal was sourced.
New Hampshire –House Bill 1309 requires animal shelter facilities to have a microchip scanner on premises, to maintain a file of recognized pet retrieval agencies, and to scan animals for microchips upon admission if their owners are not known. The American Kennel Club and the Dog Owners of the Granite State, AKC’s New Hampshire federation, support HB 1309. The bill has passed the New Hampshire House and has been referred to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee
New Hampshire – Senate Bill 569 seeks to significantly expand the state’s definition of ‘commercial kennel’ and impose bond for care requirements for those charged with cruelty. An amended version of the bill passed the Senate, and awaits committee assignment in the House. A House committee hearing on the bill is expected in early April. AKC and DOGS continue to oppose the measure and are working on pursuing amendments. Click here to read AKC’s March 8 alert on SB 569.
New York –Assembly Bill 284 would require licensing, inspections and other regulations for pet grooming facilities. This includes complying with standards of care, record keeping, completing a training course, and consenting to inspections. For violations that would not impact a dog’s health and safety, a “cure period” may be permitted to allow the groomer to fix the issue before a fine is issued. It is pending a vote by the full Assembly.
New York – Assembly Bill 465 would significantly lower the definition of pet dealer from someone who sells 25 dogs/year to someone who just sells 15, thereby subjecting many hobbyists to the same regulations as commercial kennels. The bill is pending a vote in the Assembly, and New York residents are strongly encouraged to call their Assemblyperson to express concerns. Read more about this legislation.
New York – Assembly Bill 4225 prohibits insurance providers from refusing or canceling coverage or increasing insurance premiums based solely on the breed of dog owned by the policy holder. AKC supports this bill, which is pending a vote by the full Assembly.
New York – Senate Bill 1256 would make it a crime to steal a pet from an owner’s or lawful custodian’s private property. AKC GR supports this bill, which ensures that criminals who steal pets would be charged with grand larceny in the fourth degree, which is consistent with other property theft. The bill is pending in the Codes Committee and may be considered soon by the full Senate.
New York – Senate Bill 1902 would make significant changes to the state’s consumer protection laws for all who are considered “pet dealers” (anyone who sells at least 9 dogs, or 25 if they are bred and raised on the person’s property in a year). Changes include allowing a dog to be declared “unfit for purchase” for any illness or injury within the first 30 days following the sale, and could also require the seller to pay for veterinary costs for the life of the dog. AKC GR has provided recommended amendments to ensure these provisions apply to significant issues that are present at the time of sale. The bill awaits action by the full Senate. Read AKC’s Legislative Alert for more information.
North Carolina – House Bill 179 seeks to regulate as “large commercial dog breeders” all who own or maintain 10 or more intact female dogs over the age of six months. AKC GR has expressed concerns with defining a commercial breeder based solely on dog ownership and not on actual sales or commerce. The bill is pending in the House Judiciary II Committee and AKC GR is working to address concerns and develop effective solutions.
Ohio – Constitutional Ballot Initiative. HSUS is seeking signatures to place a constitutional amendment on the ballot in November 2018 that would place constitutional regulations on anyone who has 8 or more intact female dogs of any age. The measure also seeks to make vague and problematic humane standards part of the Ohio constitution. AKC is closely monitoring this. Read AKC’s blog for more information.
Ohio – House Bill 263 would allow dogs in outdoor eating establishments, with permission from the business owner. AKC is supporting this bill, which would allow responsible dog owners more opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities with their well-behaved pets. The bill was amended by the House Economic Development, Commerce and Labor Committee to provide reasonable clarifications and regulations for outdoor eating establishments that choose to allow dogs. The bill has passed the House Economic Matters Committee.
Ohio – House Bill 506 seeks to make significant changes to the state’s regulations for high volume breeders, which include, in part, placing current regulations by the Ohio Department of Agriculture into Ohio code. AKC is working with the sponsor and a coalition of interested parties to ensure a reasonable and effective law. The bill passed the House on March 21. Read more about this bill.
Pennsylvania – House Bill 1216 allows law enforcement, emergency responders, and animal control officers to remove animals from vehicles without liability if there is a good faith, reasonable belief the animal is in imminent danger. An effort must be made to locate the driver prior to entry, and steps must be taken to “ensure or restore the well-being of the dog or cat.” These first responders would not be immune from liability if there is evidence of gross negligence, recklessness or wanton misconduct. AKC believes this is a reasonable bill to address the issue of dogs and cats left in potentially dangerous situations. The bill unanimously passed the House on July 7 and is pending in the Senate Judiciary Committee. AKC GR and its Pennsylvania federation continue to monitor this and other measures regarding this issue that are under consideration in the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
Pennsylvania – House Bill 1652 considers how to handle a companion animal during a divorce case when there is division of property. It allows the court to consider the best interest of the animal, including determining which party would best ensure the pet’s proper care, safety and socialization. AKC appreciates that this bill ensures the care of animals while still defining them as property. The bill has been assigned to the House Judiciary Committee.
Pennsylvania –Senate Bill 636 allows police officers, humane officers, and other first responders to remove an animal from a vehicle under extreme weather circumstances. AKC GR is working with the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs to request amendments to protect owners from liability should their animal harm someone in the course of being removed from the vehicle, and also to clarify that any actions taken by the first responders must be both reasonable and necessary. The bill has passed the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Rhode Island – House Bill 7609 would establish registration requirements for pet groomers and pet grooming facilities. AKC GR proposed amendments including changes to definitions that would otherwise unintentionally regulate show dog handlers as professional groomers. This bill had a hearing in the House Health, Education, and Welfare Committee on March 28.
Rhode Island – House Bill 7612 would prohibit the misrepresentation of a pet dog as a service dog to acquire any right or privilege afforded to disabled persons. AKC supports this bill, which had a hearing in the House Health, Education, and Welfare Committee on March 28.
Rhode Island – House Bill 7167 seeks to allow domestic protection orders issued in the state to also order for the safety and welfare of all household animals and pets. The American Kennel Club (AKC) supports H7167’s amendments to the state’s domestic violence statutes allowing for the issuance of protective orders that seek to guard pets from harm, risk of harm, or alienation. These provisions should not impact the legal status of animals as property. The bill was considered by the House Judiciary in February, which held the bill for further study.
Rhode Island – House Bill 7615 would protect homeless persons in possession of a service animal, as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), from being denied access to any homeless shelter in violation of the ADA or the state or federal Fair Housing Practices Act. AKC supports this bill, which had a hearing in the House Health, Education, and Welfare Committee on March 28.
South Carolina – SB 841, among other provisions, would provide for awarding costs of care when a person is found guilty of animal cruelty; limit tethering with certain exceptions; make cruel tethering an animal cruelty violation; provide that an animal shelter may immediately turn over a litter of unidentifiable puppies or kittens four months of age or younger to any organization established for the purpose of caring for animals, so long as the litter is turned over for life-saving purposes; require magistrates to complete two hours of continuing education on animal cruelty; and provide for standards of care and inspections of animal shelters.
South Carolina — Senate Bill 3 /House Bill 3668 would provide that a person found guilty of animal cruelty may be required to pay the costs of care of an impounded animal. S 3 passed in the Senate and has been referred to the House Committee on Judiciary.
South Carolina — House Bill 3009 seeks to license and regulate as a “commercial dog breeder” any person who owns 20 or more female dogs over the age of six months that are capable of reproduction and kept primarily for the purpose of breeding and selling the offspring, with certain exemptions. The House Subcommittee on Agriculture has deferred action on this legislation.
South Carolina — House Bill 3069 seeks to regulate and certify “commercial kennel operators” and “certified animal caretakers”, which could include owners and certain employees of boarding kennels and other pet care businesses. HB 3069 has been referred to the House Subcommittee on Agriculture.
South Carolina — House Bill 3272, among other provisions, seeks to make it unlawful to hunt deer with a dog unless on a fenced property of more than 1,000 acres and subject to certain provisions protecting the landowner property from damages. H 3272 has been referred to House Committee on Agriculture.
South Carolina – Senate Bill 841, among other provisions, would: provide for awarding costs of care when a person is found guilty of animal cruelty; limit tethering with certain exceptions; make cruel tethering an animal cruelty violation; require magistrates to complete two hours of continuing education on animal cruelty; and provide for standards of care and inspections of animal shelters. S 841 has been referred to Committee on Agriculture.
Tennessee – House Bill 1713 / Senate Bill 1698 would define any person who sells 25 or more dogs or cats a year as a “dealer”. Under current law, a dealer must be licensed and is subject to regulations based on federal USDA/APHIS requirements for commercial kennels. HB 1713 was defeated in the House Agriculture and Natural Resources Subcommittee.
Tennessee – House Bill 1909 / Senate Bill 1689 would make it an animal cruelty violation to restrain a dog with a chain, cord, tether, cable, or similar device while a natural or manmade disaster is imminent or occurring or an evacuation order is in effect. HB 1909 has been amended to add the provision that the dog must also suffer “bodily injury”, defined as “a cut, abrasion, bruise, burn or disfigurement, and physical pain or temporary illness or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty.” HB 1909 has passed in House Committee, and is held on the desk in Rules.
Tennessee – House Bill 2080 / Senate Bill 2466 would require that a person performing animal massage therapy shall obtain liability insurance in the amount of $25,000 for the benefit of any person who is damaged because of the negligence of the person in the performance of animal massage therapy and provide for a certification program. Amended versions of these bills have passed in both chambers.
Vermont – Senate Bill 123 would provide animal shelter or rescue organizations that assist law enforcement in animal cruelty investigations or seizures with immunity from liability for civil damages by owners of animals unless their care and treatment constitutes gross negligence. As an advocate that also seeks to protect the rights of all dog owners, the AKC is concerned with unforeseen consequences. An amended version passed the Senate and has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee.
Virginia – Senate Bill 872 as introduced would have limited the circumstances in which a person may tether a dog outside. As introduced, the bill only allowed tethering during certain times of day, and within a specific temperature range. After comments from AKC, its Virginia federation, and other organizations, the bill was amended to remove the time restrictions and to exclude certain hunting activities, but AKC GR and the federation continued to ask for further amendments to protect other AKC events and temporary humane tethering. The bill was ultimately held in the House Agriculture committee and will be reconsidered in 2019.
Virginia – House Bill 865 and House Bill 870 would require pet stores in the state to furnish a bond of up to $5000 for each breeder supplying an animal for sale. House Bill 865 would require this for any out of state breeders, and House Bill 870 would allow localities to require this for any dealer from whom the pet shop has obtained an animal in the past year. House Bill 870 was held in the Counties, Cities and Towns Committee. House Bill 865 was amended to state that localities may, but are not required, to enforce the bond requirement, and also states the bond may be up to $30,000 for stores maintaining 50 or more dogs in a year. The bond requirement may be terminated if the bond has not been called into use in 10 years. HB 865 was signed into law on March 9.
Washington – HB 2822 aligns the definition of a “service dog” with the ADA and makes it a civil infraction to misrepresent a pet as a service dog. AKC provided testimony to both houses in support. The bill passed both houses and has been delivered to the Governor.
Washington — Senate Bill 6076 — would specifically define behaviors that constitute animal abuse and animal sexual abuse. AKC GR is aware of the legislation and tracking it.
Washington – Senate Bill 6623 requires pet shops to sell only cats or dogs obtained from an animal shelter, dog pound, or rescue. It also requires pet shop to spay or neuter all dogs sold and to maintain for records documenting the source of the dog or cat sold. The bill did not make it out of committee before the legislature adjourned.
Washington – Senate Bill 6624 requires any facility that uses dogs for research and receives public funding or has a tax-exempt status to offer any research animal slated for euthanasia to a rescue organization. AKC has recommended changes that recognize that the owners of the animals and their current adoption partners should have first refusal to make re-homing decisions for any animals they are working with. This bill did not make it out of committee before the legislature adjourned.