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The Arizona House of Representatives is expected to soon consider a bill that amends the state’s
cruelty laws, including providing new, reasonable provisions regarding shelters for dogs kept primarily outdoors.

Those who wish to comment may reach out to their Arizona State Representative.  Visit and type your address to get your state representative’s name and contact information.

As currently written, Senate Bill 1047 does the following:

  • Clarifies that cruelty includes anyone who knowingly and intentionally fails to provide an animal under their custody or control with medical attention to prevent unreasonable suffering.
  • Amends the definition of “cruel neglect” to include someone who fails to provide a domestic animal under their custody or control with daily food and water suitable for consumption.
  • States that dogs primarily kept outdoors must have access to shelter that is “necessary and adequate.” This includes either natural or artificial cover that is accessible year round, the ability for a dog to stretch out and maintain normal body temperature, and a shelter that is in good repair and minimizes the risk of disease or infestation.

The provisions for outdoor shelters above only apply to dogs kept primarily outside. AKC appreciates that the measure also provides exemptions for temporary activities including hunting, training, competitions and events.

As introduced, the bill also included a new definition of “extreme weather”, defined by a heat advisory, certain weather warnings (such as a monsoon, dust storm, etc.), and when the temperature is below 32 degrees or over 100 degrees.  Although in this measure it only applied to when proper bedding was required, we were concerned about the definition being used in the future to restrict when dogs could be outside, without consideration for the needs and abilities of specific breeds.  The Senate removed the specific temperatures from the definition.

The bill was further amended in a House committee and all references to “extreme weather” are now removed from the bill.

SB 1047 has already passed the Senate and will likely be soon considered by the full House of Representatives.

AKC Government Relations (AKC GR) continues to monitor legislation in Arizona impacting dog owners and will provide updates as they are available.  For more information, contact AKC GR at