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California Assembly Bill 1491, which will be heard by the Assembly Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, April 4, would prohibit all leasing of dogs or cats.  Designed as a means of addressing abusive lease contracts as a business model for providing pets to the general public, AB 1491 would also no longer allow leasing dogs for breeding purposes. 

The American Kennel Club® supports reasonable laws and regulations intended to protect the pet-buying public in obtaining a sound dog of the breed represented. AKC supports a ban on predatory pet leasing schemes that victimize potential owners, undermine a lifetime commitment to a pet, and do not confer the rights and responsibilities associated with legal ownership of a pet.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) has historically allowed leases expressly for the purposes of breeding.  Under this system a lessee of a female would be considered the breeder of a litter produced by that female for the limited term of the lease and while in the lessee's possession.  In this limited context, leases are an important tool used by preservationist breeders and enthusiasts in collaborating on future generations of purebred dogs. 

The proposal to be considered on April 4 would ban such leases. AKC urges all California breeders, fanciers, and enthusiasts to join with the AKC in asking for amendments to AB 1491 to allow leases as used by purebred dog breeders and as allowed by AKC. 

TAKE ACTION NOW:  Go to to create an account that allows you to contact the Assembly Judiciary Committee.  Once registered and logged in, please enter AB 1491 in the “Measure” search box.  After searching, describe your current position as “Oppose unless Amended”, attach your letter of concern addressed to the Honorable Mark Stone, Chair of the Judiciary Committee, and click “Submit”. 

The American Kennel Club will continue to provide updates on AB 1491 as developments warrant.  For more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720, or email