The Missouri Legislature is in likely its last week of session, and efforts continue to be made to enact laws that protect dog owners in the state.
As mentioned in a previous alert, the House of Representatives had added language to a large omnibus bill that would prohibit breed-specific laws and protect the rights of dog owners and the health and safety of dogs when an owner is accused (but not convicted) of cruelty or neglect. The language for both these provisions are based on bills supported by the AKC and the Missouri Federation of Animal Owners.
As the session winds down, efforts continue to enact these important provisions, and the language is being added to other omnibus bills. In addition, there are efforts to include text from another bill that prohibits local governments from banning or creating undue financial hardship on enterprises that use working animals. This is defined as any animal that is used for performing a specific duty or function, including exhibition, transportation, and education. This would not preclude localities from passing bills relating to public health and safety.
What You Can Do:
Those who reside or participate in dog events in Missouri are strongly encouraged to contact the Missouri House and Senate TODAY and ask them to support the following provisions:
- A ban on breed-specific laws
- Protection for owners and dogs when owners are accused of cruelty
- Protection of the rights of owners of working dogs
Visit AKC’s Legislative Action Center (www.akcgr.org) and click on the “Find Your Elected Officials” link to get the name and contact information for your State Representative and Senator.
AKC Government Relations and the Missouri Federation of Animal Owners (MoFed) continue to closely monitor this and all legislative bills in Missouri impacting dog owners. For more information, contact AKC GR at firstname.lastname@example.org or MoFed at email@example.com.